Thursday, 5 December 2013

5 Dec: Thursday ride to Ickleton

Edward writes: A severe storm brought strong winds to large parts of the UK today, with gusts of wind in the Cambridge area reaching 57 mph. So there were no surprises today when only five people from the extreme faction of the club turned up for our scheduled ride out to Puckeridge: these included Mick C (today’s leader), Tony, Peter Wi and David Ms, who it was particularly good to see out again.

The weather was especially obnoxious, cold with a stiff west north-westerly wind which was obviously going to make the morning’s ride, at least, very difficult.


Without much enthusiasm we finally set off from the comfort of Greta's house and headed out into Little Shelford where we turned full on into the wind for the ride up to Newton; it was fortunate that there are good hedgerows along here to give some protection.


After Newton we went via Thriplow into Fowlmere and out to the A505. Riding along this exposed road became very difficult so much so that David was blown off the road onto the grass verge. This was really the signal that we shouldn't carry on as there was never going to be any enjoyment in it. We all agreed that we should divert to the Riverside Barns Cafe in Ickleton for coffee and call it a day.


So, after we crossed the A505 we went along to Chrishall Grange and then turned into Ickleton Grange and therefore faced east for the first time so it least it gave us the pleasure of two miles with the wind running in from behind us. We arrived at the Barns at 11 am, rang The Crown and Falcon in Puckeridge to tell them we wouldn't be coming, and had an enjoyable three quarters of an hour there before setting off again into the bleak weather. Our route home was via Hinxton and Sawston, where we used the cycleway to go into Whittlesford and back into Great Shelford, which we reached at about 12.45 after 23 hard-fought miles. Cutting short the ride turned out to be a good decision as the afternoon developed into heavy rain! Edward Elmer

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