Retired, work part-time or shifts, enjoy being out in the countryside? Then cycle the lanes and byways of Cheshire and surrounding areas with Chester Easy Riders: you won't get left behind.
Chester Easy Riders is an independent cycling club affiliated to Cycling UK. We cycle every Thursday throughout the year with moderate and brisk day rides of 40 to 80 miles.

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Friday, 8 June 2012

7th June 2012: Bickerton Poacher (mod)

It was Liz’s idea to put on a shorter ride for members not wishing to sign up for the Club’s annual ‘long ride’.  Great idea if it hadn’t been for the weather.  The forecast was for rain all day.  Sure enough it was raining at 09:10 as I left home for Manley Mere Windsurfing Centre and it was still raining when I arrived.  The thought did cross my mind that it might be drier doing a session of windsurfing than a day riding!  Who is going to turn out on a day like this, but true to her word Liz made an appearance and we settled down to a coffee while discussing what we should do.  I had a route down to Hanmer of some 60 miles (nice pub the Hanmer Arms) and we agreed a couple of bailout points for if it got bad.
With no one else making an appearance the two of us left Manley Mere at 10:30 up towards the Delamere Forest, through Kelsall, past Willington Hall, Clotton, Huxley, the Shady Oak and Beeston Castle.  In truth it wasn’t all wet and with time to chat we made good progress.  Then the rain started again as we made our way south through Peckforton.  By the time we reached the Bickerton Poacher the temptation to stop was just too great and as it was already past noon we convinced ourselves that it was perfectly acceptable.  So much for our pre-arranged bailout points.
A light bite of ham, egg and chips washed down with a pint of Flying Scotsman from the Caledonian Brewery made for a perfect lunch on such a dismal day.  With no need to hurry we had time for a coffee before venturing back out into the wet.
Our route back took us round Bickerton and Larkton Hills past Broxton Old Hall, down to the A41, Chowley, Tattenhall, Hargrave and Tarvin.  In Tarvin we avoided a standoff between a bus and a line of cars by taking to the pavement.  Then a few more lanes and we were back at Manley Mere having completed 37 miles.  Although wet this will be a day to remember.  Thanks to Liz for getting me out.

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