Thursday, 8 June 2017

8 Jun: Thursday ride to Gamlingay and Henlow

Edward writes: Our ride this Thursday was planned for Gamlingay for coffee and Henlow for lunch. The weather was a bit indifferent as it had been for much of the week, the wind was blustery, but there was no rain and just the prospect of the odd shower; nothing to get in the way of a good ride. In the city Rupert stepped in to lead and had six riders with him, and out at Haslingfield Mike C could double that with twelve riders, among them Angela who was making her Thursday debut.

Preparing to leave Haslingfield

When Mike said that we wouldn't be starting with a climb over Chapel Hill there was an audible sigh of relief. So that left us to go through Harlton, and with the blustery wind in the south-west, meant we would, for most of the morning, be riding into it.




After crossing the A603 we passed through the Eversdens, Kingston and Caxton and on the approach to Great Gransden we turned into Little Gransden and then onto the road (plenty of wind here) leading into Gamlingay.

Coffee and bacon sarnies at Gamlingay

LJ's is a club favourite, probably for its bacon sarnies, and also, for some eyes at least, the woman with the blue eyes. Altogether there were about twenty-three, including Vic and Mike S out on his electric bike. Since our last visit LJ's has extended its seating area and so we were easily accommodated and quickly served.

Flower display in Gamlingay

Preparing to leave Gamlingay

After coffee most returned home leaving about eleven to go on to lunch. Our route took us over Gamlingay Great Heath to Everton for the descent of Tempsford Hill, but with the wind against there were no heroics trying to achieve a personal best. For once only a short wait at the level crossing, over the A1 and then Blunham and Moggerhanger where it began to rain. We pressed on but at the turning for Northill, with dark clouds all round, a leaders conference was called and after some indecision they decided that the ride to Henlow should be abandoned and that instead we should go to the Shuttleworth Museum at Old Warden, barely three miles ahead. Not long after we pulled into the museum shortly before 1pm.

During our lunch break two vintage buses appeared and they ran about the airfield with about sixty school children on board, which appeared a lot of fun.

Shuttleworth Airfield, Old Warden

After a quick look around the museum shop we started for home at 1.40pm. The rain had stopped and for most of the ride the wind would assist us as we made our way through Broom and Langford and the climb up to the water tower beside the A1. Rupert was obviously enthused that the wind turbines were earning their keep. Progress was rapid, passing through Edworth and Hinxworth and on to Ashwell. After Steeple Morden and Litlington we did Mike's favourite detour round Abington Pigotts to Bassingbourn. After Meldreth, Shepreth and Barrington this left David W and Rupert to traverse Chapel Hill back to Haslingfield giving them a total of 56 miles. The wildlife count today was two buzzards. As ever, our thanks to our two leaders for giving us a good day out. Please note that next Thursday's ride from Hauxton will start at 9.15am. Edward Elmer

Download GPS track (GPX).

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