A select three set off from the Yorkshire Showground marvelling at the wonders of Gordon’s recumbent trike – a truly glorious thing! Cool start after a wet night but the weather soon warmed and we had a pleasant ride out via Beckwithshaw to Hampsthwaite. Disappointed to find Sophie’s coffee shop is closed on a Wednesday – a fact I feel I should have known – it’s not like I’ve not been there enough times! We had planned to come back to Harrogate via Knox Lane but fearing the little pack bridge at Knox would not accommodate the recumbent trike, we had a change of heart and headed home via Ripley. Coffee in the Castle Courtyard in the sunshine. As we left Ripley Tim headed for home taking the road to Knaresborough whilst Gordon and I made our way back to Harrogate on the Greenway – lovely to hear the yellowhammers singing!
On a very blustery morning there were still many Wanderers wanting a ride today. We split into three groups. I lead the 1st group, Sally the 2nd and Bridget the 3rd. The route went up past Little Almscliffe where the photo of the 1st group was taken and on to the Menwith Hill crossroads where we turned left into the strong westerly wind. It was a long slog up Greenhow Hill Road where the wind was coming sideways but the views were as good as ever. Eventually we reached the top of Duck Street and turned left. I think everyone was pleased to get to the sanctuary of Stump Cross caverns and enjoy lunch, a rest and a good chat. The return was much easier with the wind more behind us. My group turned left at Padside to get out of the wind a bit and take a lower route down the valley. We eventually got to Hampsthwaite where we took the high route up over the A59 and to Pennypot at the Army Camp. John left us to go along to Beckwithshaw, while the rest of us headed up Pennypot Lane and up to Cornwall Road, where we all dispersed, heading for our various homes. 44 miles, 3193 feet on my Strava. Thanks to everyone for your company and especially to Sally and Bridget for leading the other groups. Liz P