We rode through the puddles waiting for the promised improvement. It came eventually: as soon as we arrived at the pub!
I can thoroughly recommend the Market Day special menu, and there was no time for salads on such a day. Well fortified we set off about an hour later through the park and heading out for Stoneley Green.
The rain had given way to a freezing cold head wind interspersed with short intense showers, some of them hail. This was not a day for the faint hearted and even Xmas shopping began to take on a rosy glow in the memory banks. However we slogged on up to Peckforton by which time my little legs were feeling decidedly knackered: they’re shorter than everyone else’s!! We parted just after the castle at Beeston, with Clive heading for Tarporley and his car at Utkinton. The rest of us then set off for Hargreave and Greenlooms. There was no let up from the wind but the hedges and bends gave us some protection as we steadily worked our way to the Crocky Trail and Waverton. The A51 was crossed just below the golf course and we arrived in Guilden Sutton just as the light was beginning to tail off. Ray and Ivan took Station Lane despite the ‘Road closed’ signs (at least they weren’t riding on the footpath) while I tackled the last hill up to a hot bath.
About 53 miles from Chester: very creditable in the circumstances.