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Chester Easy Riders is an independent cycling club affiliated to Cycling UK. We cycle every Thursday throughout the year with moderate and brisk day rides of 40 to 80 miles.

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Friday, 7 February 2020

6th February 2020: Nesscliffe (brisk)

It’s a train ride to Chirk for today's outing, travelling out with Trevor it is looking a very promising day with blue skies as far as the eyes can see. Arriving at the café in the town, the moderates have already taken over with a good turnout. The brisk group today is down to two – Nick and I. The mods are out of the door promptly leaving us to settle up and get ready.

We depart via Colliery Rd and crossing over the A5 to Pont y Blew. The sun is still bright but it is quite chilly as we descend Rhyln Lane. Nick stops to put a scull cap under his helmet and we set off. The roads are dry from Chirk to this point but, on going around a left-hand bend and continuing down hill, we hit ice across the road. No time for warnings but Nick crashes down onto the tarmac. After the shock he is able to get up, bike and clothing intact but his shoulder took the brunt of the fall and is bruised, so we decide to ride back to Chirk.

After loading his bike in to his car, Nick is off home for some pampering hopefully. I decide to ride my route so set off again taking extreme care when approaching the bend. It is probably 15 minutes since the accident and the ice has gone! For the rest of my ride I did not encounter any further icy patches. Unbelievable and unlucky. When Nick was gathering himself together a tractor, quad bike and two cars passed over the ice, so I can only assume busy traffic grated and dissolved the ice/slush.
Along Glyn Morlas Lane and through Ifton Meadow with the only category climb of 15%, its onwards to Ifton Heathand along Cross lanes towards Dudleston. Its now across country to Welsh Frankton and Hordley. The lanes are very quiet of traffic and it’s a pleasure for me to be riding alone and at my own pace enjoying the vistas as I cannot remember these lanes, but our leader has explored most lanes between Chirk and Shrewsbury so my memory is fading!

I pass through little villages of Lower Hardley and Bagley and approaching Lullingfields its similar to Newmarket as there is a grand stud stables and foal fields along with gallops. Dropping down to Myddle, I can remember a Clive route from Battlefield passing through this town but whenever you go down roads, there is always an up to challenge you.

The lunch stop today is at Nescliffe and a pub called The Old Three Pidgeon’s. I don’t think I’ve visited before but is a very old-world inn with a lot of history and a resident ghost that luckily was not behind the bar. Service was very friendly and my lunch was served very prompt and I was soon back on my bike again. My departure from my lunch stop took me along Nescliffe woods and the verge was covered with snow drops and crocus, I’m soon knocking on Knockin village and to Maesbury Marsh before skirting Oswestry.
The Pub
Another Solo Rider
I thought my route took me via the Fort, but I was passing the old works on the B5069 Gobowen Road and crossing over the A5 at Park Hall. At Gobowen, I wait at the station as the gates are down and the 1452 service from Chirk is arriving so I have an hour for my next service home. Between Gobowen and crossing the A5 again, at Whittington Road, I espy a group of riders, who I suspect were the Mods on their way back into Chirk via St Martins.

For me it was Weston Rhyn and Chirk Bank arriving back into town too early for a quick train home so amused myself at Stanton House and a relaxing 50 minutes. Unfortunately, not accompanied on the ride today, and I hope Nick isn’t too bruised, but an enjoyable 52 miles covered, although the planned route was only 46 miles, on I’m sure some new lanes in spring-like sunshine all day. Its a route I would enjoy riding again with some brisk riders to join me.

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