Harrogate Cycling for Pleasure
Harrogate's cycling club for people who
don't wear lycra! (and some who do)
Sunday, May 13, 2018

Wheel Easy Ride Report 623

Short Ride

We were lucky to have three new riders join us for the Short Ride today, and several other riders were returning after a winter break.  The route plan was to head through Beckwithshaw over the moors past Little Almscliffe Crag and onwards to the Visitor Centre at Fewston Church.  What a day to ride over the Yorkshire Moors!  The early cloud gradually lifted, the roads dried and the views were crystal clear, it was a perfect May Day for cycling.  We got briefly mixed up with another cycle event - I subsequently found out that it was the Harrogate Triathlon. 

The Visitor Centre provided the usual exceptional standard of cakes, and we all refuelled for the return.  We took a few more minutes to appreciate the excellent display of bluebells in the churchyard and headed off, mainly taking the same return route.  A lovely group of riders, and all the new-comers stayed nicely on the pace.  Many thanks to David Preston for providing excellent back-marking support.  20 glorious miles.  Martin W




Medium Ride

There was no ride leader for todays medium ride and only five takers – Julie, Marian, Peter, Marwood and Tim.  We were determined to do the published route but various sections were a bit obscure from the written description, so after a quick look at the OS map and Tim revealing he knew the way to Linton off we went. 

Marian assumed command from Linton having once lived in the area.  Marwood made his own way home from Collingham and the remainder flogged our way up Jewitt Lane to the pig farm at the top of the hill to delight in the antics of the numerous piglets racing about.  

Finally arriving in Tadcaster we were well served at Lemon Tree café and chatted about past and future cycling holidays and the latest OS Landranger maps that allow a mobile download to your smart phone.  

From Taddy Peter was out in front taking us on to the new cycle track at Walton and on through Wetherby and the Harland Way to Spofforth.  Finally the showground hill provided a fitting end to a perfect ride with good crack and 39 miles. Tim R 



Medium-plus Ride

After the fast boys departed the remaining Medium Plusers were a small enough group to leave as one, leaving gaps for overtaking cars, on the busier roads and indeed the numbers fluctuated as some joined and others left as  we progressed through Ripley to Sawley via the usual Drovers route. A democratic vote on the roadside outside Sawley determined that it was too early to stop at Risplith and so we moved on in ever increasing warm sunshine up and down through Grantley to the top of what I know as Dallowgill Moor where you catch a first glimpse of the monument at Greygarth and we stopped to admire the magnificent views, watch and listen to Curlews and Peewits and take advantage of a great backdrop to the team photo.

Then it was down past the mosaic  and up again eventually to the Monument which some chose to visit on foot whilst the remainder enjoyed a short break in the sun with yet more great views. Gia and Paul left ahead of the main group to get a head start at Fountains cafe, but then due to an inadvertent scenic tour of Galphay ended up behind us. However the Fountains system seemed to be a bit more streamlined than usual and we were soon through and back on the road heading home along Watergate Lane and past the Drovers back into Ripley and along the Greenway. A lovely day on which the weather beat our expectations, the mileage was about right on the advertised route and the ascent was in the order of 1000 metres, give or take a metre or two. Thanks to everyone who came, even for a short spell, for your company and to Justin for for his usual sterling job of back marker. James G.



So on a morning blessed with unexpected sunshine we set of from Hornbeam Park and headed to the hills via the sleepy Harrogate backroads the greenway was blessed with early morning dog walkers but we soon passed them and reached Ripley and the first real hill of the day, Scarah Bank and up onto Fountains Rd where we lost two of our number for a slightly slower paced ride and gained Simon a new face..well to me anyway!. So with the reshuffle done we swept down Hebden bank and up the other side lots of cranking gears trying to find traction to attack the hill, ably led by Mark; I think he was in Le Struggle mode..we all came to the conclusion he's ready for it. 

We past through Sawley and turned left just before GT's cafe and down hill passing Grantley sawmills and the river Skell and up towards the village..It's old English name means "clearing of a man called Grante" he probably owned the pub to!  So left it was after the village and the start of a long hall up to the open moor tops road turning right for a welcome downhill stretch and the sudden left hander which is the very narrow road up to the Greygarth monument. Just thinking it was great not to meet the car coming out of the junction we all met the milk wagon round the next corner...ahh such timing!.  Sweeping along this road we soon reached the Monument itself built to celebrate the extinction of wolves from the area but it sadly fell down in the early 1890's and was rebuilt twice firstly to commemorate Queen Victoria's diamond jubilee and again in the 1980's.  

Onwards dipping down towards the valley bottom and up out on to Kirby Moor Road picking up a nice bit of speed as it undulates towards Kirby Malzard which we ignored and headed out to Laverton and down towards Ripon and the coffee stop. 

After that it was of back home towards Harrogate, Mark wanted more hills so he broke away towards Markington and Martin headed to Boroughbridge which left three of us to Occaney Bank I headed back home leaving Dave and Simon to complete the ride back towards town. A good hilly ride enjoyed by all and we have pictures too. Tony P



Medium Plus Reserves

It became pretty obvious whilst climbing Scarah Bank that we were a bit outclassed in our group, the advantages of age becoming apparent; so Helen and I regretfully dropped off the back of the group to continue at slightly abated pace.

The stiff ascents up to High Grantley seemed a bit of a tussle but we made it without too much puffing and panting. We tried to follow the route description from the website, but somehow missed the Greygarth Monument, findng ourselves hurtling down through Laverton. 

It seemed too early to head towards home and so set out to Masham where a cup of tea and a bun were enjoyed in the glorious sunshine.

The Market Place was very busy with a collection of around 20 sports cars from the 60's parked up.

An enjoyable half hour of people watching ensued, before we departed towards Ripon via Snape and the usual route, during which bit of the ride Helen went nuclear before taking a wrong turn at the big roundabout in Ripon.

Once re-united, we rode home at a slightly more sedate pace via Markington Bank and the Greenway for an excellent 58 miles day out.

Thanks Helen,  Dave S.



Long Ride

In the absence of an official ride leader, Dave Rowson suggested a route and hence became leader by default.  The general idea was west into the wind to get a tail wind home, so we headed for Bolton Abbey via Timble, Askwith and Langbar.
Choice of cafe stop was determined by giving it to whoever was willing to write the ride report, so we went to Tea on the Green as I regarded a report as a small price to pay for their superb fruit flapjack.
Onwards via Cavendish Pavilion (impressive bluebells) and the back road to Barden, then up from Appletreewick to Stump Cross for further refuelling.  Greenhow to Hampsthwaite passed in a flash with wind assistance, after which we split up to make our various ways home.
Thanks to Dave (x2), Phil and James for an excellent ride on a day which far surpassed the weather forecast.  I recorded 58 miles and 5400 feet of climbing (although Mr Garmin does seem to get a bit carried away in these parts). Richard L.


All rides are at your own risk. Please ensure that you have your own third party insurance (check your house insurance) and consider Cycling UK membership.