John writes: Four riders joined me at Brookside: Jacob, Howard, John E, and John Meadows of Ashwell Cycling Club and of the Vintage Cycle Club. On a recce ride I attempted approaching Shepreth from the top of Kingston Hill, along the Harcamlow Way into Wimpole but the off-road section was unrideable. Hence we set off via the Addenbrookes Cycle Path into the Shelfords.
At the Duxford War Memorial Howard and Jacob decided to take a low level route via Hinxton and Chrishall Grange whilst the rest of us went directly to Ickleton and then took the long climb to Elmdon into a strong head wind. After a brief pause by Elmdon Church as the clock struck three we headed downhill with a following wind to Shepreth via Chrishall Grange and Fowlmere arriving at the same time (3.45pm) as Jacob and Howard.
The day riders were comfortably seated already: we joined them for splendid cakes and tea/coffee. We were treated to a glorious sunset on the descent from Elmdon which was even more spectacular when we came out of the cafe at 4.15pm. Having been rather slow to get started and after fiddling with the lights I was cut off from the rest of the riders by the level crossing barrier and so had a solitary ride home. I could see the flashing rear lights on the ascent of Chapel Hill. I reached home at 5.15pm having cycled about 25 miles.
This was winter cycling at its best and Sunday afternoons have the benefit of very light traffic. I cannot be the only member to be disappointed that the Sunday afternoon rides are not continuing in January and February. John Ferguson