As the promise of a sun-filled day brings out the caravans on the roads, so it also does CER riders. There were obviously too many for a single ride so, as I needed to back in Chester by 16:30, I offered a brisk ride to the Hartford Hall Hotel. Jim took the sedate group Audlem way. At first there was just Brian Mac and myself on the starting line, but soon Ray, Paul, Liz D and Martin ensured we were not a "Billy no mates" pack.
We set off bound for Tilstone Fearnall via Beeston and the Bunbury bypass. Then out via the quiet lanes to Wettenall, where a left turn took us into Glebe Green and then the Winsford suburbs. The bright sunshine was enough to even make Winsford look good! Approaching Foxtwist Green, we take the downhill road to Whitegates. Here a right up the incline takes us into the Vale Royal Golf club entrance. Here we employ the reverse "Mathews Golf course traverse" route along the lane beside the Weaver Navigation. The "road" here is now in a poor state after the severe winter, but just rideable in the dry. Across Chester Road, we are at the Hartford Hall Hotel at 12:00 with 20 miles completed. With the spring sunshine continuing we partake of a promptly delivered and tasty repast in the garden. Lunchtime conversation covers all the subjects that should not be discussed in a pub i.e. sex, religion and politics.
An hour up, we're off via the windy estate roads to take the old Chester Road westwards from Hartford heading for Cuddington and Norley. The run back to the Ice Cream Farm is now straightforward via Delamere Forest, Kelsall, Willington and Huxley. We arrive at the ICF by about 15:30 with 39 miles completed with no incidents on a fairly brisk, warm and dry ride. Post refreshments, Ray, Paul and I make our way Chester bound as Brian Mac, Liz and Martin take to their cars.