Wet Medium Ride

The medium steady ride on the website was route 165 to Menwith Hill via Beckwithshaw and Fewston Bents, but we had looked at the weather forecast, and it was awful. Others must also have checked the weather forecast, as there were only a few people at the Showground. We decided that discretion was the better part of valour, and said we were going to Sophie’s for coffee instead of the published route. No-one demurred, and seven of us set off towards the Greenway. It duly started to rain as we approached Ripley, and a vote was taken whether to continue to Sophie’s or to stop in Ripley for coffee. Martin was outvoted, so we went into ‘Grindhus’ in Ripley, glad to get out of the rain and cold. With his coffee David Stross had a sort of flapjack which was too hard to cut.  Martin’s rectangular mince pie was better (maybe a little too sweet). There was a ‘Real Yorkshire Market’ on in the Castle, which was quite busy. Some debate about what a ‘real Yorkshire market’ might imply. Nobody was inclined to visit it, given the weather, and we all returned to Harrogate the way we came.    About 12 miles    Joe

Short Ride

On a rather gloomy morning that promised to only get worse, all those who had signed up for the Short Ride to the 36th Annual Cyclists Celebration of Christmas Service at Tockwith duly turned out and opted for the reverse route through Wetherby, except for Yvonne who was up for something a bit longer and took her own route. The rain soon started , although it was not torrential and the flooding on the roads was more of a hazard. We made such good progress to Wetherby that there was time for a quick coffee stop, although this may well have been the sub-text anyway for taking the reverse route. It was Christmas Market day in Wetherby so it was very busy and getting served took a while but afterwards we put the hammer down a bit through Walton, as the rain became more persistent and were not deterred by a “Road Closed” sign for flooding, which turned out to be a mere puddle compared to some others we had encountered! An excellent lunch was waiting for us at Tockwith, followed by a short service of carols and readings in the church and tea and cake before we left. There was no argument about the return route and the most direct through Cowthorpe and Little Ribston was the unanimous choice. A good day out, despite the weather, in the good company and about 31 miles, but probably not a calorie neutral day!  Thanks to Gia, Paul, Mike W, Sarah, Yvonne and Monica who came and the Debbie for joining us in Tockwith.    James G

Cattal Bridge Flooding