Sunday, 5 April 2009

5 April: Day ride to Wicken, Prickwillow and Balsham

Bob Billingham writes: Despite it being a fine day there were only two other cyclists plus at Brookside for the all-day ride: Joseph and Mick C.

We set off over Parker's Piece and across Midsummer Common, following NCR 51 to Quy except for a diversion via Fen Ditton and High Ditch Lane. From Quy we took the road to Anglesey Abbey. Just beyond it we turned left into the village of Lode proper and out of it again at the other end. Then we took a right turn down a surfaced lane leading to a further right turn along a rough section of farm track where we met the start of a new route for cyclists and walkers, all nicely surfaced leading to a new bridge.

After riding over the bridge we picked up the drove road which meanders round to Upware. After going throuh the village we followed the main road to Wicken where we turned down the lane that leads to the fen.

At the cafe at the Visitors' Centre we met Adrian, Vic and John T. After some welcome refreshments we continued north along NCR 11, eventually reaching the pleasant riverside cycle path which took us to Ely.

At Ely, John left us to catch a train home from the nearby station. The rest of us crossed the A142 and took the road to Queen Adelaide where we turned right for Prickwillow. Here we had some more refreshments at the very interesting Drainage Engine Museum.

After lunch, we bought tickets and toured the museum, leaving at 2 pm for the long haul to Balsham. We took the route over Great Fen, which for a change was not very windy. We passed through Isleham and continued through Chippenham, Kentford, Moulton, Gazely, Ashley, Cheveley, Stetchworth and Dullingham, West Wratting arriving eventually at Balsham for tea at The Bell.

After tea I returned home to Cambridge. Total mileage: 69 miles. Bob Billingham

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