Nine riders assembled on a slightly chillier, but less windy evening than we’ve been used to of late.
Heading out of Harrogate via Pannal, we climbed Drury Lane into Kirkby Overblow, before looping round the back lanes and dropping down to the Leeds road. We headed on through Dunkeswick, and followed the valley, doing our best to avoid swallowing the millions of insects that were swarming around the freshly cut fields by the riverside.
After reaching Pool, we turned right by the church in Leathley to climb up towards Stainburn and Almscliffe Crag. This narrow lane gets quite steep as it passes the church, before levelling off as the views of the surrounding countryside open up and we reached Almscliffe Crag, and back onto familiar roads. The view across Wharfedale was as pleasant as ever, reminding us how lucky we are to be able to cycle round this part of the world.
The steep climb out of the top of North Rigton set us up for the drop and then dragging climb on the road to Beckwithshaw, where a left turn allowed us to reward ourselves with the fast and well surfaced descent into the village, before the group separated as we arrived back into town via the Otley road. Its getting later and later before we need to swtich our lights on – it wont be long before we might be able to dispense with them completely for our night rides, when surely it will be time for a bit of post ride re-hydration in a beer garden somewhere!