I was surprised to see so many riders at the Gallery given the definite chance of rain and hills. I offered a 40 mile round trip via Wetherspoons in Holywell, which was accepted in the time-honoured fashion i.e. an absence of any other offers. It rained a little as we slid around Buckley on our way to Sychdyn and then the lanes ever upwards to Rhosesmor. This route was used as a change from the usual way out via Northop. At a catch-up stop at the highest point of 923ft at Moel-y-crio, Dave H suggested an alternate ride to the Red Lion at Llanasa to minimise the ups-and-downs of my round about route to Holywell. So after the majority accepts this, Ken and Mike McC sped after me down the hillside towards Rhes-y-Cae bound for Holywell the long way round. The route is via the lanes of Lixwm, Babell and the edge of Cerwys towards the crossing point over the A55 at the top of Rhuallt Hill.
Then I realise we could join and “surprise” the Moderates by getting to the Red Lion ahead of them, so we re-route via Trelawynd. There’s just one single chevroned hill left to go now as we all are flagging after 25 miles. However the “surprise” is on us as the Red Lion is shut! I try to call Steve T to advise them to change their lunch venue, but the telecoms are a bit flakey. So we three grind out of the vale and on around Whitford to Holywell and into the busy Market Cross pub with now 32 miles completed. A text from Steve tells me they are actually in Caerwys for lunch! The Moderates must have been psychic, or realised Llanasa was a long way to go. We set off back in clearing skies along the old Chester A road before diving down into Flint and along the coast road to Shotton. Mike and I peel off for the Greenway, whilst Ken powers on via Hawarden completing 46 miles with 2900ft of climbs, before passing through, still on his bike, back to Rossett.