A century day
I’ve just had a three day run where my 3 routes have totalled 230 miles/360 km. The first was a glorious ride of 80 miles over to Rockingham and Rutland, and the second was a 50 mile route that I call my ‘four counties route’, taking me from Cambridgeshire, into Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire, with a rest stop in Olney.
But to crown these two rides, on the third day I headed out to a tiny village called Brampton Ash, on the fringes of Market Harborough in Leicestershire, to meet up with a crowd of cycling ‘cronies’ at the rambling farmhouse of one of our members, James Singlehurst, who owns a pheasant hatchery, hatching three quarters of a million chicks every year.
Refreshed with lashings of tea and cakes, a group of us set off to do a circular 27 mile route along the Welland Valley, taking in pretty villages like Gretton and Harringworth, Middleton and Caldecott, and zooming beneath the astounding Harringworth viaduct,
a masterpiece of Victorian industrial architecture. Occasionally we climbed laboriously out of the valley, only to fly back down inclines at over 40 mph.
Energy restored after a pub lunch in Weston by Welland, I headed home, picking up a pot-hole induced puncture outside Kirby Hall (the classic ‘snake-bite’ puncture will either be caused by potholes or cattle grids). Through Oundle and back to Kimbolton, energy draining about 10 miles from home…..I glanced at my computer and immediately understood why……….by journey’s end I was going to clock 100 miles.
It’s funny how hitting ’round numbers’ in cycling adds a feel-good factor to the ride. And it’s only very sad people who cycle round the block a few times when they get home, just to round up their numbers. Of course, I would never admit to such practices……..