Sunday, 14 February 2010

14 Feb: Day ride to Wicken Fen and Wilburton

Joseph Sugg writes: I turned up at Brookside this morning to find four others braving the cold. However for once there was no ice on the roads. Adrian led us out along Newmarket Road before turning off to join the Jubilee cycleway. Along the way we picked up Rupert, who had correctly guessed the route we would take.

Our route took us through Fen Ditton to Bottisham and from there to Lode. Lode is a pretty village which we rarely cycle through. Our route north of Lode took us into the Fens, along empty farm roads and along the new cycleway across White Fen before joining the road to Upware.

At Upware we crossed over the busy A1123 onto the minor road (the Sustrans route) to Wicken. At the Wicken Fen cafe Vic was waiting for us. National Trust cafes are notoriously pricey but £3.00 for a coffee and a scone didn't seem too bad at all.

After Wicken we rejoined the Sustrans route to Ely. The tarmac bit was very dirty and the stretch before the bank was quite slippery, but negotiable. However once we were on the top of the floodbank we could enjoy the Fens at their best. I find the Fens one of the best landscapes in the UK, and we passed several young swans in the fields.

We cycled through Ely and then across the busy A10 to reach the Coveney road. Coveney is perched on one of the few hills in the area, and is a peculiar sight as you ride towards it. From Coveney we rode across the A142 and on to Wilburton. We stopped at the Twenty Pence garden centre in the village. It was a long time since I have been there and, like most garden centres, it now has a huge cafe which was packed when we arrived. However the cafe was very efficient and the food is reasonably priced.

There wasn't a lot of choice for the route back. We rode down the Cottenham road before turning onto Long Drove, a quiet concrete road which leaves you pretty shaken up by the time you reach the end! Then we turned towards Landbeach and the A10 crossing over to Milton. We went through Milton and joined the riverside path back into Cambridge.

The weather was changeable today. Although it was largely dry there was the odd shower - and it was very cold. Thank you Adrian for a good day's ride in the Fens. Total mileage 54 miles. Joseph Sugg

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