Nigel writes: We had a good turnout for tonight's ride: Paul, Gareth, James, Klaas, John E, James, Ian W, newcomer Rene and me, making this the largest evening ride for some time. It was a warm, dry evening though rather overcast. After introductions and a brief route discussion we set off south along Trumpington Road to join the busway cycleway and then the DNA path to Great Shelford.
Although the whole group was riding quite fast this evening, it was clear that Gareth was keen for a fast ride and when we reached the DNA path he was disappearing into the distance. James was also clearly straining at the leash, and after I suggested he catch up with Gareth to give him some company he sped away too and we didn't see either of them until the pub stop two hours later.
Meanwhile the remaining six continued at a slower but still quite rapid pace through Little Shelford and Whittlesford to Duxford. From there it was a short distance to Ickleton and the start of the climb up Coploe Hill. At the top we paused for the traditional group photo.
We continued south to Catmere End before swooping down the other side towards Littlebury Green and a further descent down to the B1039. A short distance along this quiet road brought us to the junction known as Wenden Lofts, where we turned back north for the short climb back up to Elmdon. Here we turned left for another exhilarating switchback descent to Chrishall Grange.
We crossed back over the A505 to Fowlmere and after a short diversion to Thriplow we arrived at Newton, where we stopped at The Queen's Head. Gareth and James were already there; they had taken a similar (but slightly longer) route to ours and had arrived ten minutes earlier.
After a round of drinks and a few mugs of the pub's famous brown soup we prepared to set off back towards Cambridge. I turned on my lights despite the fact that the sun was not due to set for another fifteen minutes.
Our route home took us to Harston, along a short length of the A10 to Trumpington P&R, and then along the busway cycleway to the station. I arrived home a few minutes later, at 9.35pm, having cycled 34 miles.
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