Sunday, 5 February 2017

5 Feb: Sunday ride to Gamlingay and Hinxworth

Ray writes: I'm always reluctant to volunteer to lead full-day rides in the winter as you never know how the weather is going to turn out. Today it was cold, foggy, and damp and, although the fog lifted shortly after coffee, the temperature never got above 4℃. Despite the unpromising weather, I was joined at Brookside by nine riders: Alex, Mike CC, Sheila, Rupert, John J, Dimitrios, Alan, Ian B and Tom. John S was also there to make sure the new rider registration procedure went smoothly (it did!).

Setting off from Brookside (Photo: John Seton)

I had considered two routes for the day, one suggested by Rupert and Alex's route from this ride last year. I opted to follow Rupert's suggestion as it went fairly directly to coffee and afterwards included a little-used road through Sutton.

We left Cambridge via the Coton footpath and continued to Hardwick, where we turned south for Toft then took a direct route to Gamlingay via Bourn and Longstowe. We met Susan by the roadside near Bourn, and arrived at coffee to find Richard, Mike S, and Edmund already there. Adrian, who had also made his own way there, arrived shortly after us. Several riders left the group after coffee to make their way home, but we were joined by Edmund and Mike S, making our number back up to nine continuing to lunch.

Rupert's route took us south through Potton, but we ran into a closed road as we entered the town that was impassable even to cyclists. I briefly discussed the options with Alex and we agreed to go via Cockayne Hatley and Wrestlingworth instead, picking up our planned route at Eyeworth. We bypassed Ashwell on the way out, heading fairly directly to the lunch stop at Farrowby Farm. It had been a relatively short ride from coffee, so most of made do with a sandwich or panini for lunch.

After lunch we retraced our steps to Ashwell, then took a very familiar route home via Steeple Morden (where we were joined by John S, who had spent the morning repairing his bike), Litlington, Bassingbourn, Meldreth, Shepreth and Barrington. People started to leave the group to make their way home, first Mike at Meldreth, then Ian in Shepreth, and almost everyone else in Haslingfield, leaving just me and Dimitrios to ride into Cambridge down Barton road. I arrived home at 4pm after a round trip of 60 miles.

Download GPS track (GPX).

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