Wednesday, 21 September 2016

21 Sep: Evening ride to Shepreth

Nigel writes: After last week's heatwave there was a definite autumnal feel in the air this evening, with sunset taking place only half an hour after the start of tonight's ride, and a definite cool feel in the air as the evening progressed. However it probably only felt cool because we were still dressed for summer: it wasn't cold by any means, and a perfectly fine evening for a bike ride.

I had five companions on the ride tonight: Paul, Tom, Dimitris, Andrew and Mike K. Our route followed the familar pattern for an evening ride to the south, following the busway to Addenbrooke's, the DNA path to Great Shelford, and the road through Little Shelford, Whittlesford and Duxford to Ickleton.

Between Little Shelford and Whittlesford I persuaded the group to ride in a fairly close 3x2 formation instead of our usual practice of riding single file on a long, strung-out line. This was something of an experiment but I think it was successful. The basic idea is that a compact group is easier to overtake, but it also has the happy consequence of making conversation easier, and also making riding easier for everyone except the two at the front.

On the busway to Addenbrookes

At Ickleton our group divided, with Paul taking the direct road to Chrishall Grange whilst the rest of us took the longer and hillier route via Coploe Hill and Royston Lane. When we arrived at Chrishall Grange Paul was waiting for us, and we all continued the final few kilometres to Fowlmere and on to Shepreth.

Our pub stop this evening was at The Plough in Shepreth, and it was as pleasant and efficient as always, with our orders of chips arriving within a few minutes.

At The Plough, Shepreth

After about half an hour we set off back to Cambridge. This involved riding along the most worn-out road in the area to Barrington and then climbing over Chapel Hill to Haslingfield. From there we continued to Barton and followed the cycleway back to Cambridge. I arrived home at 9.55pm, having cycled 54km (33 miles).

Nigel Deakin

Download GPS track (GPX).

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