Thursday had dawned cold and wet, but promised improvement and this promise had enticed 13 Easy Riders to meet at the Gallery Tea Room in Hawarden. The rain ceased but the skies remained overcast with a cool westerly blowing. Bryan W and Trevor were doing their own thing, and Clive was only joining the ride for a short time before leaving for fun and games in Norfolk. This left 10 of us, Dave H, Steve T, Keith, Paul R, Ken, Tom, John M, Ray, Andy B and myself, on a ride to the Piccadilly Inn at Caerwys.
We rode out through Ewloe and Buckley before entering countryside and some steep climbs to Rhosesmor. Once the height had been gained we ran along lovely open lanes towards Babell. At one point Dave suggested that the faster riders should go ahead to the pub, and after some debate about navigation, this is what happened. Both groups had arrived at the Piccadilly by 1230 and were made very welcome. Most ordered sandwiches which came with chips and were made of the thickest slices of bread we’d ever seen.
|Photos by John M|
Next we passed through the village of Chwitffordd on the way to Pantasaph. After completing all of 7 miles since lunch, Dave suggested a stop at the Franciscan Friary’s St Pio’s Café. This was well received and for many of us this was our first visit. We received a friendly reception and sat outside in a warm and sunny spell enjoying our drinks and for some our sugary treats. Google tells me that people have been coming to Pantasaph for 125 years on a constant spiritual journey. In 1852 the church of St. David’s, in Pantasaph was completed and, together with other buildings and surrounding land was given to the Franciscan Friars who arrived at that time.
Remounting we cycled over familiar ground across Halkyn Mountain, crossing our outward route on the way to Northop and back to Hawarden. The ride totalled 42 miles, relatively short for the summer, but seemed just about right with the company, a couple of excellent stops and improving weather.
John M in addition to taking the above photos, has also produced this Relive! link which is well worth looking at and where you’ll find a couple more good pictures: