I was therefore not surprised to be joined by eight riders this evening: Gareth, Conrad, Neil S, Ian W, Jim, Sven, Chris and Kenny, the best turnout for an evening ride since last summer.
Trumpington Road, Cambridge
We set off south from Brookside along Trumpington Road and then along some back streets to join the busway at Long Road. I was the leader tonight (as usual), though since most people knew the route there wasn't much leading needed.
Joining the busway
We followed the busway south to Addenbrooke's and then joined the DNA path to Great Shelford. We continued to Little Shelford and followed the familar route south to Whittlesford, Duxford and Ickleton.
With a slight northerly breeze to help, and with everyone in good spirits, it was clear we were in for a relatively fast ride and I had some difficulty in persuading the group to stick together and not leave the less speedy riders behind.
We climbed Coploe Hill, where the group divided, with the more frisky riders continuing with me to Catmere End, Littlebury Green and Elmdon and the others taking a slightly shorter route via Royston Lane.
Walking round a temporary road closure at Littlebury Green
After reaching Elmdon, my group descended to Chrishall Grange and then crossed the A505 to Fowlmere. A few minutes we arrived in Thriplow, where we stopped for drinks and bowls of chips at The Green Man. Already in the pub were the three who had taken the shorter route, and Gareth who had sprinted ahead from the start and taken an extra loop via Clanver End.
All nine of us in The Green Man, Thriplow
After a pleasant half hour we set off back to Cambridge. It was now quite dark, and rather cooler than before. At this time of the year there is quite a marked difference in temperature between day and night and it's easy to find yourself underdressed and uncomfortable.
The ride back took us through Newton to Little Shelford and then back into Cambridge via the DNA path and busway. I arrived home at 9.40pm, having cycled 34 miles.
Download GPS track (GPX).