Manley Mere was to be the meeting point but it was closed, so the ever-reliable Hildegard’s was chosen. I arrived just after 10:00 to find John waiting outside. Hildegard opened up shortly after and gave us a warm Christmas welcome. A little later Dave M arrived, and we spoke about our Christmases and cycling. Both John and Dave were only out for a brew and made their ways home. I needed a bit more exercise after too much Christmas cheer, and followed an old ride southwards out of Holt to the west of the Dee to Bangor, then on to Penley and Bettisfield before looping back north towards Hanmer. The return was via Cuddington Heath, then northwards east of the Dee to Farndon.
Despite bad weather warnings the ride out was dry though muddy and cold. After a quick stop at the Hanmer Arms (always a good choice) the return was wet and murky. A lone walker flagged me down just north of Shocklach – she was lost and wanted to know how to get back to the Carden Arms! I put her on her way and my good deed done, headed back to Farndon and then on to home increasingly wet. The snow started after my return.
One of those days when it was well worth the effort to get out. The round trip from Holt to Hanmer would have been about 40 miles.