Thursday, 15 June 2017

15 Jun: Thursday ride to Wicken and Kentford

Edward writes: Summer continues. Twelve members started from Hauxton and in the city where Glyn was the leader there were fourteen. Today's ride would take us out to Wicken for coffee and on to Kentford for the lunch interval. We could expect temperatures in the mid-twenties but accompanied by a stiff westerly breeze. This would help in the morning but would be a bit less forgiving in the afternoon. In view of the distance to Wicken we brought forward the start from Hauxton a quarter of an hour to 9.15am. The start from Hauxton took us through both the Shelfords to the DNA path via the hospital. As always it never ceases to amaze us how rapidly the building landscape changes here in such a short time; already a large building is appearing out of the ground right beside the DNA path. We made use of the new access to Hills Road by going through the Ninewells development ready for the climb over the Gogs and down into Fulbourn.

With the wind behind we made good progress through the Wilbrahams to Bottisham and both the Swaffhams. In Swaffham Prior we turned to go into Adventurers Fen and the Lodes Way. Given the choice of taking the shorter route to Wicken, using the gravel tracks, only John F and David H opted for it with the rest remaining on the road up to Upware. With the wind behind we made good progress and we arrived at Wicken Methodist Church at 11.15am and after 24 miles, thus justifying the decision to leave earlier.

When we entered the church hall we were overwhelmed as not only were there the fourteen city riders but numerous others and apparently someone counted thirty-five members - some turnout. The church laid on lots of cake and it was unlikely that anybody went short, and for this we thank Simon and Sara for organising such a successful coffee stop.

Wicken Methodist Church

As usual these days quite a few returned home from Wicken leaving two groups to head for Kentford. We left Wicken on NCN 11 to Barway as far as the G's hostel where we set our course for Soham. When we arrived in Soham we had to use the main road to bring us to Fordham, but this was achieved without too much discomfort and now it was on to Chippenham where we noticed that the Tharp Arms is under new management.

After Chippenham as we approached the A11 there was a bit more traffic about but with only Kennett to go through we were almost at the Animal Health Trust where we duly arrived at 1pm and a further 16 miles.

Lunch at Kentford

With the weather so good everybody sat outside in the courtyard, later to be joined by those with packed lunches. At 2 pm we started the return journey and this would be a lot harder than this morning’s effort, especially as it seemed the wind had increased in strength.

Preparing to leave Kentford

When we got to Moulton we had the biggest hill of the day before dropping down to Cheveley. A brief stop here enabled Averil to pursue one of her favourite pastimes with a visit to the local library.

Cheveley's Librarian


When we were all assembled again we went via Saxon Street to Woodditton, Stetchworth and Dullingham. In Dullingham Averil, Clive, Adrian and Tony left us leaving the last six to head for home via West Wratting, Balsham, Hildersham and Abington. We finished the ride at 4.45 pm and those going back to Hauxton would have completed 70 miles. Edward Elmer

Download GPS track (GPX).

1 comment:

  1. Good write-up, Eddie! John J