Thursday, 18 October 2012

18 Oct: Thursday ride to Horseheath and Kedington

Edward writes: With the arrival of autumn numbers arriving for the rides are naturally smaller than the eighteen and twenty we had during the late summer. Nevertheless nine riders gathered at Greta’s house in Hauxton for our trip to Horseheath and Kedington and with the usual changes of personnel during the day this number would rise. Today’s ride leader was Adrian, thus guaranteeing and interesting ride as he would be able to draw on his vast knowledge of all the byways in East Anglia.

Sawston

We set off in a single group and rode through to Whittlesford before joining the cycle paths over to Sawston, through the village and on to Babraham and then to join the farm track over to Gt. Abington.

Great Abington

When we turned into Bourn Bridge Road which leads into Gt. Abington the fields on both sides were showing a second flowering of poppies - quite a sight. We quickly came to the A1307 and then on to Hildersham where we turned left for the climb up to Balsham and our first sight of the wind turbines. At the top of the hill Adrian had a puncture but insisted we should all carry on through to our coffee break in Horseheath, which we achieved via West Wickham and Streetley End. The Old Red Lion Inn is an extremely popular stop and with good reason. Already waiting for us were three plates of cakes, and tea and coffee waiting to be served; in fact more was provided than we could possibly eat. It was good to see everybody willing to put in more money than the normal charge.

West Wickham

Horseheath

After coffee it was back over the A1307 through Mill Green and down through both Shudy and Castle Camps and on to Helions Bumpstead and finally Steeple Bumpstead. Now errors started to creep in as the leading group of three overshot the turning to Steeple Bumpstead and carried on towards Sturmer. The main group carried on and unbelievably Adrian took us on a minor road which only led to a farm and we had to go back before taking the road to Birdbrook. The navigational error was well worth it as we cycled on roads that we hadn’t seen before and no doubt will be used again. The rest of the trip into Kedington via Baythorn End and Boynton End was uneventful and we arrived for lunch shortly after 1 pm.

Hundon

After lunch Adrian led us on more minor roads via Brockley Green and Hundon before bringing us back to Gt. Wratting. The combination of recent wet weather and the sugar beet harvest made the roads were very muddy; everyone will be cleaning their bikes tonight or in the morning, won't they! From Great Wratting it was into Withersfield, over Wratting Common into West Wratting. The last part of the journey took us close to the wind turbines as we sped downhill towards Six Mile Bottom. This just left the two mile run up to Little Wilbraham where we ended the ride as this is where the city group headed off towards the river whilst those going south of the city went home via Fulbourn and Cherry Hinton.

Helions Bumpstead

This gave a mileage from Hauxton of 51 miles although most people, by the time they got home, would have done over 60 miles. Thanks to Adrian for a great day out and who once again demonstrated his vast knowledge of our local area.
Edward Elmer


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