Tina writes: After the last couple of weeks' rain, Sunday dawned bright, if not actually warm and sunny and 11 riders met at Brookside encouraged by the promise of a dry day. Jeremy was joining us for the first time having received his 'welcome to Cambridge CTC' email and impressed us all with his bike, kitted out for a forthcoming JOGLE ride with not only panniers, tent, bottle cages etc, but also solar panel for re-charging his GPS and phone!
Mike K led us across Parker's Piece, Midsummer Common and along Riverside where several 'eights' were lining up to race towards Stourbridge Common. Following NCN route 51, we rode up to Newmarket P&R and then alongside the A1303, turning right just before Bottisham down Little Wilbraham Road. At Six Mile Bottom, we turned left along the A1304, and then right along a track to cross the railway line and onward up and down a quiet track towards Westley Waterless, turning right at the crossroads to Brinkley.
By now the ominous spots had turned into more substantial rain and a couple of riders donned waterproofs. On the plus side the surrounding countryside looked particularly lush and we spotted a variety of wild flowers along the verges - cow parsley, wood spurge and an abundance of cowslips. May blossom was also beginning to flower in the hedgerows and surrounding fields were ablaze with rape seed.
From Brinkley, we turned back to Willingham Green, down to Weston Green and finally up to Wratting Common, where it was a short hop to the Chestnut Tree in West Wratting. The new landlords Peter and Rachel gave us a very warm welcome and had set out a delicious array of sandwiches, home made cakes and pots of tea in their separate dining area. Here we met lone day rider, Adrian and Mike S who had ridden direct and all enjoyed sitting in cosy surroundings chatting over tea.
Unfortunately it was raining more convincingly when we set off and Jacob, Steve and John opted for the Roman Road back to Cambridge, while Mike led remaining riders along quiet lanes via Dullingham, Swaffham Bulbeck, Bottisham and back along the Jubilee cycleway into Cambridge. Luckily it had stopped raining for the final few miles allowing us to dry out and all agreed it had been a great afternoon. Thanks to Mike for a well chosen scenic route through beautiful Suffolk countryside. Total distance: 42 miles. Tina Filby
Photos by Jacob Hassan
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