25 September 2016

25 Sep 2016: Hatfield to Stansted

Graham led this ride, which marks the end of our year as far as awarding the Hargreaves Trophy is concerned.  This is awarded each year to the South Herts CTC rider with the best attendance on Sunday rides.  No prizes for guessing who won it again this year.

18 September 2016

18 Sep 2016: Wheathampstead to Maulden

Nine of us met at Wheathampstead for a jaunt into the Bedfordshire countryside and we welcomed new rider Virginia and a Wednesday evening rider Mark. We set off for Kimpton via Gustard Wood and once there we made our way over to Whitwell via the small network of lanes that side of Kimpton. Whilst doing this we had a lovely 20 min.

break as Bill copped a puncture near the Holt farm. I led the group on a lovely meandering route across to Great Offley, where I planned a small bit of off road, but the previous Friday’s rain had put paid to that idea. So we headed for Lilley and did Gravel Hill instead.

It wasn’t that far to Stondon but it did seem a long way and we got there 15 mins late, not bad really. Going towards lunch was a nice route that took in Henlow (didn’t realise the RAF base was so big), Ireland, Chicksands and Clophill. At first break we picked up Adrian and another rider called Geoff, who helped out as I casually rode past a turning I needed to take. It turned out that the road we were on led to the same place so all was not lost.

Lunch at the Dog and Badger was very pleasant and after lunch we headed to Emily’s in Whitwell for tea, with this route I had help from Carol who navigated us down the A6 cycle path, some of this I recognised as we went through Barton-le-Clay then down the A6 again to Streatley, from here it was a small case of everybody enjoying themselves as we traversed the whole of Lilley Bottom to tea break. It was great to see all riders staying out all day and picking up some new riders along the way.

Neil 18/09/2016

17 September 2016

17 Sep 2016: Saturday ride to Codicote

First off this weekend we had a Saturday morning jaunt from Hatfield to Codicote that took in the quiet lanes in and around Old Welwyn. Four of us attended this ride and we got a very nice comment from Geoff Reason, who thanked us for showing him how great cycling could be. I hadn’t seen him or Sue for about a year and in that time they had completed London-Brighton, a coast ride from Manchester to Blackpool and they had also done London – Paris. It was lovely hearing all about their adventures as we pootled about the lanes. 

The garden centre in Codicote is a nice little place that offers the usual fare at quite a nice price and was also playing host to a group from Ickleford.

The route back to Hatfield took in the farmer’s road between Whitwell and Kimpton; using this road gives a great view across the county and both fields that flanked either side of the road were jammed packed with cows basking in the sunshine. We headed over to Ballslough Hill and through Wheathampstead, then it a quick navigation of the lanes between Wheathampstead and Hatfield, taking in the lovely lane by Symondshyde Woods and we were back in great time after doing 21 miles.

Neil 17/09/2016

11 September 2016

11 Sep 2016: St Albans to Ivinghoe

After all day rain on Saturday, it was a bright start to Sunday morning, but with a bit of a chilly and damp touch of autumn, when we headed north from St Albans along the old A5. We turned off soon to twist through the lanes behind Hemel and eventually came out on Gaddesden Row and on to Studham. The weather was warming up in a big way.

Doing a left before the village we descended the steep hill overlooking the Gade valley with eerie cries coming from Whipsnade on the right. North from Dagnal to Edlesborough we avoided climbing Ivinghoe Beacon, just skirting round the edge we were soon refreshing ourselves pleasantly in the village tearoom, a very highly recommended venue.

Here our party split up. Domestic circs meant I had to head back for home and some others needed to get home too. But a valiant few, excited by the great weather decided to press on to lunch. What became of them I don't know - I haven't seen them since, but the rest of us headed back very pleasantly by way of Aldbury and Redbourn.

Richard 11/09/2016