Paul writes: I arrived at Brookside on a slightly hazy but hot day at 8.55 to find Freya, a new prospective member sitting alone. Freya had done one Saturday ride accompanied by her father but wished to ride faster and further than he did. As no one else had arrived by 9.05 we set off to the appointed stops via Barton, Haslingfield, Newton, Thriplow, Fowlmere, Chrishall Grange and Ickleton to the Riverside café for coffee. During this part of the journey we met several cycling clubs as well as solo and pairs of cyclists.
John B also called for coffee but photography was his calling for the rest of the day. We also had coffee with three other cyclists from villages south west of Cambridge who were keen to learn more about our club and hopefully will join us in the near future. Still the two of us Freya and I tackled familiar hills against a moderate southerly breeze going via Coploe to Catmere End, Littlebury Green past Clanverend Farm to Arkesden, bypassing Wicken Bonhunt to Rickling before turning south to Clavering and the Clavering Lakes lunch stop. Still no more members on bikes but one who was having a days fishing! The morning had been hot but not oppressive due to the breeze. We even had a brief moderate shower during lunch, enough to encourage us to move inside but not enough to stop the combine cutting wheat across the lake.
We then had a navigational conundrum as my PDA stopped and I was short of the Luton map needed to find Braughing for tea. Fortunately my intuition got us to tea via Roast Green, Meesden Bury, Brent Pelham. From here we tried to go via Hartham Common and a white road to Furneux Pelham via ford. This proved impassable even on foot with water filling the road to indeterminable depth. Backtracking via Stocking Pelham we per chance passed a finger board to Braughing and so learned we were going in the right direction. A local lady pointed us to the village hall for tea arriving at 3.15, 42 miles from Brookside and 75 minutes early, time we used to relax and enjoy the abundance of cakes and pots of tea.
About 4 pm we were joined by Stuart who had soloed from Cambourne and eventually, almost on time, Mike led his team of 3 from the pm ride into a welcome break.
All 6 returned together with the benefit of a tail wind via Hare Street, Brent Pelham (having missed the narrow lane in Great Hormead to Ansty), Langley, Duddenhoe End, Elmdon, Ickleton, Duxford and Shelford. A total distance Oakington- Oakington of 85 miles.
The membership of the group was interesting with only two currently regular active members, two members active ca. 20 years ago and two teenagers, Callum and Freya. Hopefully we will have the pleasure of their company again in the near future. Paul Dover