On a morning with a definite autumnal feel, turn out was low as many members were on an Away Day. So our select group split into three smaller groups to do a ‘reservoir trail’. As there was no Short Ride, we enjoyed the company of Justine, Bob and Dennis, who all ‘peeled off’ at various points. The groups made their way via Swinsty, Fewston , Thrusscross to Darley. We all remarked on the lovely scenery as well as the lack of water in all the reservoirs. We met up at the cafe to discover that Mike P had skidded on some gravel and taken a tumble. Fortunately, his wife came to collect him while Mark was going to kindly collect his bike. Hope you’re ok, Mike. The rest of us headed home via Birstwith and Hollybank woods. A beautiful, if hilly, Autumn ride with the usual cheerful company. Alison N
Fifteen riders gathered in Malham Car Park for todays ride with decent weather prospects ahead. The first group of six sped off and the ‘Steady’ group of nine set off at a more sedate pace.
The first part of the ride was described as undulating but there were a few short sharp climbs as we made our way through Airton and on to Eshton and then heading towards Hetton, Cracoe and Grassington. It was a really enjoyable route with great views of the Fells as the sun was out and there were frequent stops for photos and enjoying being out in the countryside.
From Grassington it was the quiet lanes to Kilnsey and lunch at the Trout Farm. The first group were already there and enjoying there brunch and after a brief chat they sped off again. We took our time and were reluctant to go as we knew the tougher hills were ahead….we made our way to Halton Gill and the first climb with the electrics leading the way and the self powered group doing brilliantly well to make the top without being too tired. It was clouding over and the prospect of rain spurred us on to cover the undulating landscape. Despite the gloom there were still some brilliant views and we headed for the ‘big climb’. There was a steep descent which led to an even steeper climb on which John H and Paul T took the honours by making it up with out touching tarmac.
By now we were heading back to Malham and disaster struck 4 miles from home when John H’s gear cable snapped ( in a high gear!) so he had to climb /walk the last section before enjoying the rewards of the steep descent into Malham. Malcolm decided he was getting chilly and hit the turbo back to the car and an early snooze!- before being disturbed by the whole group arriving back after a great ride which met all the Awayday criteria- great route,a few challenging climbs, superb views, good food stop and most of all good company.
Thanks to Richard Leake for devising the 40 mile route and leading the ride and to John Hackett for sticking with, and leading, the Steady group. Thanks also to all those who joined the ride and especially to John C who was making his debut on an awayday- hope it lived up to his expectations. Kevin D
Six riders signed up for the above away day and the initial ‘shout out’ has to go to Tim (T4) Swanwick for coming up with five fantastic routes to choose from.
Quite early into the ride we met the other Away Day riders coming in the opposite direction ( we hope you had a great ride). We made excellent progress through Winterburn, Airton, Otterburn and Hellifield onto Bolton by Bowland where we encountered a flock of 500 sheep being herded along the lane by a very pleasant young farmer. How much does a sheep cost in this day and age I wonder? Apparently £96.50- Rachael wins as her guess was the closest. Lunch was taken at Mansell’s in Clitheroe in the Swan courtyard.
After lunch we set off for the hills which were challenging but not overly so. On one of the climbs we encountered another, less friendly farmer who blamed us for spooking his flock- surely not? Anyway after a magnificent display of herding Tall Tim got the stray sheep back into the field. At one point the two Tim’s deviated along the canal and we met up with them at ‘the crossroads’! One final swoop and we were back at Gargrave and in the pub for a glass of the amber nectar. A wonderful day’s cycling with a lovely group of friends. Janet G