There were a surprising number at the Gallery this week, but six of us set off as the Brisk Group (Ivan, Ray, Colin, Tom, Martin and Clive) bound for Meliden. “Where?” you ask - near Dyserth and Prestatyn. Ivan had led a ride this way recently, but it soon became clear that my route was not the same as his.
We headed for Alltami then the back lane to Sychdyn, taking the exhilarating run down to the A541. At Rhydymwyn, we turn right up a long climb to the edge of the Halkyns. A left takes us to Rhes-y-Cae, then up to top out at 923ft. A quick left and right down the hill takes on a straight run through Brynford and through to Lloc. On the A5151 to Dyserth, we turn left down a beautiful autumnal lane resplendent with pheasants launching themselves off at our arrival. This lane swoops up and down getting us to the top end of Dyserth. A quick left and right finds us diving down a tiny lane shadowing the old railway cycleway to Prestatyn. As we rise and fall and with a mile to go, Martin succumbs to a rear wheel puncture. After a short time, we descend rapidly down into Meliden for the Red Lion.
Inside, the Red Lion is in need of a makeover, but there’s Brains bitter on tap and £6.95 two-course meal on offer. All bar one of us plump for the fish and chips main which comes surprising quickly given that the dining room was pretty busy with an 80th birthday party. The food is wholesome and good for the price as well.
Leaving around 14:00, we make our way back to Dyserth and then take the long chevroned 20% climb up the hillside to reclaim 750ft of elevation. Across the hills we see the rain coming and it annoying lasts for about 15 minutes on an otherwise dry but cloudy day. The route back is the usual run to Babell, the Windmill and down to Northop.
Martin’s super Garmin tells me that we have had 3,900 ft of accumulated climbing, with some 20% gradients, but my aching thighs told me that anyway! A fast ride today with many sections seeing madcap speeds, peppered with grinding ascents. The round trip to the Gallery was 48 miles, with 60+ for Chester starters.