Despite the early showers, there were plenty of riders at the Ice Cream Farm but only 3 briskers. I had proposed a ride to Market Drayton but readily agreed to Clive’s amendments so as to make the Olde Jack pub in Calverhall our lunch destination. With John W making up the party, we headed off in the direction of Beeston, Bunbury and Alpraham. Clive was setting a good pace and we were soon sprinting along the short stretch of the A51 before turning off at Barbridge. Then after looping around the lanes, we cross the A51 and begin our approach to Nantwich. The route takes us through the west side of the town and through the park near the River Weaver. It was all very pleasant as we meandered along the shared pathway but suddenly Clive parted company with his bike and was flat on his back. Thankfully, he was back to his feet very quickly saying that all was well with him and his bike. We think his wheel skidded on the metal grating that runs for several metres alongside the path as it passes close to the river and under a bridge.
Relieved that no damage had been done, we leave Nantwich via the A530 but soon turn on to Coole Lane to coast along pretty lanes towards Audlem and without further incident to Calverhall. We enjoyed a warm welcome at the Olde Jack and were soon served our selection of baguettes and sandwiches. Conversation included the various apps available for route mapping and also Brexit. Unsurprisingly we were unable to come up with a solution to the question of the Northern Ireland backstop!
Returning to the simpler question of getting home, we jumped on our bikes heading in a northerly direction. Keeping up a good pace we passed through Aston, Wrenbury, Cholmondeley and Bickerton. It was a bit of a grind up Harthill and we paused at the top to admire the view which on such a clear day included Liverpool Anglican Cathedral in the distance. We then raced downhill and up again before sprinting on to Tattenhall. Foregoing afternoon coffee at the Ice Cream Farm, we made our way home. A good run out in decent weather for November. Long may it last!
The route to and from the Ice Cream Farm is about 55 miles but the three of us completed about 80 miles each (averaging 16 mph) including the return trip from home.
See route map and/or gpx file download