Not many members gathered in Alison’s for the first meet of the year, just myself, Dave H, Steve T, Andy B, Ray and David M. David was in civvies reading out the day’s miserable weather forecast: temperature hovering around zero, brisk southerly wind and soon to arrive rain. Consequently, almost everyone had arrived by car. Steve T had a route in mind to Aston, but as soon as we stepped outside the café it started to rain heavily. These weren’t encouraging conditions, and the general consensus was to abandon the day’s ride, which I could understand. However, I thought that I would ride out a bit and see what developed.
So it was that I set out alone towards Harthill, hoping that the hill climb would warm me up. As I headed up Bolesworth Road the rain turned to snow and I abandoned the climb to Harthill, instead heading towards Brown Knoll. As I passed Bickerton Church the snow had stopped and the rain lightened, so I continued towards Bickley. The surfaces weren’t at all icy, but very muddy and strewn with hedge cuttings. I got as far as Marbury without incident, so thought that I might as well continue into Whitchurch where I stopped for a coffee and a snack.
This was far enough for the day, so to return I took the old Roman road past Grindley Brook, through Malpas and on to Tilston and Stretton. With the southerly wind and virtually no rain this was an easy section. I continued through Barton and on to Coddington. A little sunshine had started to emerge so I forwent shelter at Manor Wood Café and continued on back into Tattenhall. Just before arriving back at the start there was a sharp shower with heavy clouds suggesting more heavy rain. I was pleased to end my solitary ride at this point with 31 miles covered.