The weather forecast for today was to be better than expected. After a week of rain and high winds I set off for the Ice Cream Farm passing Jim and friend on Hare Lane. As I was early I intended on doing a little extra before coffee at the farm.
On arriving there were already a collection of bikes including Jim's. I offered a route to Hough (past Nantwich) and Ray, Tom, Colin, Paul and myself set off.
We took the route to Beeston taking the turn via Peckforton. The satnav route was taking a diversion through Cholmondely estate along Cholmondely Lane but when we came to the end of the road it was decided to return back to the main road. We spoke to some estate workers who advised that there is a route to the castle but with the recent wet weather probably not suitable for a road bike. Perhaps a dry summer ride! Turn round and plan B!!
We set off along the main road turning left and passing the Bickerton Poacher. The connection of the two pubs either side of this hill is the Pheasant!! at Burwardsley.
Riding along at a good pace we were soon into Wrenbury passing the Dusty Miller. Round the corner to Aston and passing the Bhurtpore Inn and only 11:40 so too early for curry yet! Continuing along good dry lanes although we had passed a couple of tractors busy in their duties of hedge management we were racing through Audlem passing another stop the Shropie Fly. Then on to the road to Bridgemere and Wybunbury when the cry is where's the pub. Not far, just round the corner, and another 8 miles we were pulling up at the White Hart at 12:30 with 30+ sunny miles covered. The menu was good and the three beers to sample. We all selected the hearty lamb casserole with suet scones. Excellent choice.
Feeling refreshed the return journey was via Weston and Shavington before heading into Nantwich. Going through the town and Welsh Row we were soon in the lanes again (Marsh Lane). Using Dig lane to Swanley and continuing to the Wrexham Road then enduring the busy traffic until turning left again for Brindley.
After a reasonable pace all day the brisk riders decided that on passing Beeston along Stonehouse Lane, Wickson Lane and Tattenhall Lane and with the ICF only 4 miles to go, to sprint. I was shown clean wheels with Ray and Colin topping 30mph on the stretch with Tom and Paul in hot pursuit. I can honestly say it was very fast and glad when we got to the cafe. Hot chocolate and cake needed to put calories back and we bid farewell to Colin who was going MTB riding over Moel Famau in the dark.
A good ride on dry lanes in about 16˚ C at an average of 16.7mph over 60 miles (81 to home).
The ride home to Chester was a little more sedate, at Huxley I had a rear flat but as it hadn’t gone down fast I pumped it up and it lasted home. Too many farmers cutting hedges I think.
Thanks all for an excellent day out