The New Year was seen in with a party and champagne last night, but that was some hours ago. Now it was New Year’s Day and time to set off for the first CER ride of the year. With the Blue Moon Café closed for refurbishment the decision was made to join up with the CTC Chester Section at Christleton Pond for a leisurely joint ride out to the Carden Arms at Tilston to join the annual New Year’s Day meet of local cycle groups. Of the eleven riders who met up at 10:30 there were three CER members (David M, John and myself).
Sue Booth demonstrated her new selfie stick before Martin led us out via Waverton and Tattenhall. The weather was much warmer than it had been on New Year’s Eve and we soon had to stop to shed a layer of clothing. Then it was on to Tilston via Chowley and Lower Carden arriving just after 12:00 noon.
Judging from the number of bikes outside, the pub was already busy and so it proved. There was a queue of Wrexham Reivers at the bar and with only a single barman on duty it took a while to get served but at least the food order of beef or veggie stew could be ordered at the same time. Lessons learned from last year when a separate food queue meant twice as long standing in line. The stews were excellent and were served and consumed quickly. Then it was time for the serious business of catching up with old friends from the other cycling groups; quite a few of whom I only get to meet once or twice a year. Mike Cross made the presentations to the leading local female and male tourist competition riders: Lowry Evans and Peter Dilworth. Soon it was 14:00 and time to leave.
Sue Booth led the ride back by way of Crewe-by-Farndon, Aldford and Saighton where we split up with some heading back to the start and others taking the direct route to Chester. In all about 30 miles done; dry with the wind against us in the morning and wet but with the wind behind on the way home. A great way to start the New Year.