When most of us woke this morning, the skies were clear and blue, but by the time we gathered at the school, it was not nice with a fairly constant falling of rain! Once again, we were heading for Masham in not nice conditions. However, 14 hardy souls were prepared to brave the weather with the lure of coffee and cakes at Suncatcher’s Cafe! We also welcomed a new rider this morning, Phil. Good to have you on board Phil.
The route to Masham was a fairly straightforward one, heading out of Harrogate and into Knaresborough, then taking the old Knaresborough Road to Ripon through Bishop Monkton. From Ripon, it was then on through Galphay, Kirkby Malzeard (where some idiot in a Land Rover developed some road rage for no apparent reason) and Grewelthorpe, before the sweeping descent down into Masham for some much needed relief from the rain in Suncatcher’s.
After refuelling, Pete announced that he was going to go back via Lofthouse Moor to get some more hills in his legs before his crack at the Raid Alpine next week. The rest of us followed Malcolm on a route out of Masham that took us around some back lanes near Thorpe Perrow, and into Snape. Crash!!! Rider down!! On a tricky bend Phil W had come off. Thankfully he was not hurt in any way and after a quick straightening of the saddle he and the rest of the group were back on our way. We eventually found our way through the lanes to Wath and back to Ripon.
Once in Ripon, and after a nice little detour past the Cathederal, we made our way back to Harrogate by retracing our earlier route, down the old Knaresborough Road, into Copgrove and through Knaresborough for the all to familiar slog up Knaresborough Hill and home to nice warm baths/showers.
Despite the weather everyone agreed that it was a really good ride. 55 miles at an average of 15mph.
View the route: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/99872857