Only a very select trio today - not sure why, as a dry day was in prospect.
To quote Henry V, “ We few, we happy few, we band of brothers (and a sister)”, and so it was that Ray and I, after riding out from Chester and carefully past Davenport Corner, arrived at Alyn Waters soon to be joined by Liz D, and no one else! We set off bound for the Sun Inn at Rhewl - and here I should have remembered the rule - see below. Up to Summerhill and down to the aptly named Moss Valley, we duck and dive to get round Wrexham to Bersham, past the mill and Talwrn and up the hill to "Rhos…gog". Upwards from here is the back way to the start of the Panorama, and I haven’t been this way before and neither apparently has Ray, until he remembers the Prospect Cafe and various audax rides around here. Anyway the Prospect is now closed until Easter. Turning onto the Panorama proper, we find a lovely smooth road along with several road hog drivers coming the other way. The view is truly worthy of a panorama; especially in late autumn with Dinas Bran castle looking menacing in the distance.
Photographs by Clive Albany
We speed up and down and plan to exit onto the Horseshoe Pass main road just after Rock Farm. The good news was that the intended lane was soon to be very smooth; the bad news was there was no way past the tarmac-laying machine. So we go down the road and next left up the longish hill through the woods. Here a lady on an electric bike overtakes Liz and me - you can see the use for them if you lived around here though! We turn off bound for the Sun Inn at Rhewl - having checked the website, I surmise that its open for business - but no, its well shut - why don’t they just put a message on their website or close it down! The rule is - always phone. Anyway, we backtrack along the Old Coach Road, past the Chain Bridge Hotel (backup lunch stop) and take the canal path to the canal side cafe, which suits us just fine after 24 hilly miles.
Quick and value service is on offer today. The cafe will now though only be open on Friday and weekends over the winter. We delay our departure to let the only rain of the day pass by and we are on our way on the canal path bound for Cefn Mawr. Here it’s the standard way back via Ruabon, Bersham, Sainsbury's and the Llay Road. While Liz goes back to Alyn and her car, Ray and I speed back to Chester via Marford Hill, Dodleston and Lache Lane. The roundabout route is 41m with 70m for Ray and I. Where were you all? You missed a real visual treat.