Sunday, 12 July 2009

12 July: Afternoon ride to Thurlow

Today was another warm Summer's day. The forecast was for isolated showers but these never materialised and it stayed warm and sunny all afternoon. Ten people turned up for today's afternoon ride. The appointed leader was indisposed so I hurredly devised a route and led the group east out of Cambridge along the river to Fen Ditton and Quy.

Here we split temporarily into two groups. Jacob and Mike K continued to Bottisham where they turned right onto a long farm track that led, after three miles, to the railway level crossing at Westley Bottom. Meanwhile I led the remainder of the group along the parallel road to Little Wilbraham and Six Mile Bottom, where we turned left along the A1304 and then right along a short section of unsurfaced road to the level crossing, where we stopped to wait for the off-roaders.

A few minutes later Jacob and Mike arrived and we continued up the hill (below) towards the cross-roads where we would turn left for Dullingham.

From Dullingham we continued north-east past various stud farms including Dalham Park Stud before turning right to Saxon Street. From here we meandered through the lanes towards Kirtling and Cowlinge, enjoying the afternoon sunshine.

From Cowlinge we continued to Cock and End and the A143, which we followed past the prisons for a mile before turning right once more towards Little Thurlow. On entering the village we rode through its dry ford:

At The Cock we found Mike S and Joseph from the day ride, George and Peter who had come by car and David S and Julia who had each cycled there directly, making sixteen for tea. As always, the food was very good in quantity, quality and variety and served with good humour by the landlady.

After tea we split as usual into two or three separate groups for the relatively long (18 mile) ride home. Mike K, Ian and Julia took a route back via Six Mile Bottom whilst I led a group back via Balsham. We had feared a headwind for our return trip but in the event it wasn't too bad. I was home just before 7pm. Total mileage: 47 miles.

View this GPS track on a larger map

Photos 2 and 4 by Gareth Rees. Licence: Creative Commons CC-BY-SA v2.0

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