Cheam & Morden Sunday Rides are open to all Wayfarers and are a nice wind down to the weekend. The pace is B pace and the same format as Wednesday rides, please check the rides list and the C&M blog.
Hope to see on a Sunday.
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B Group Wednesday 28th October
The day started out well. It was bright and sunny at Weybridge, if a little chilly, and we were looking forward to 12 miles to lunch and 12 miles in the afternoon to tea. The forecast was going to be sunny in the morning and wind and rain in the afternoon.
However, we were overtaken by events and most of you will have heard that Ray took a tumble on the canal towpath just after Woking on our way to tea. This has inevitably coloured the memories of the day for us.
We had four groups totalling 19 riders in all and the first group was away by 1020 and the last at 1115, the idea being that we would have an early lunch and therefore an early tea and be home before dark and before the deterioration in weather. For most of us that was the case. The groups set off westward's passing by Addlestone, through Ottershaw, onto Chobham (without going into the town) before we reached the Hare and Hounds in West End, Bisley. The pub is well set up for groups and provided us all with socially distanced tables in a marquee. The food was excellent and the service not too different from what one normally expect.
It was obvious that the wind was increasing but that didn’t matter as it was going to be behind us on the run to tea. So, after Knaphill, it was onto the “Pluto Trail”, down to the canal and along to Addlestone via New Haw.
My group, which was the last on the road, were enjoying the Autumn colours along the canal when Ray strayed off the tarmac. Unfortunately, the leaves by the side of the tarmac disguised a marked ridge back onto the tarmac and that's where he took his tumble. It was quite clear that we needed to get an ambulance. However, despite our protestations, it took an hour and a half to arrive and during that time the heavens opened. The four of us, Tim G, Gill, Colin and myself did our best to protect Ray. We had some invaluable help from some passers-by - one of whom had a space blanket.
Ray ended up in A & E at St Peters, Chertsey and is still there recovering as I write. He tells me that he hopes to be back home after the weekend. We wish him well and a speedy recovery.
What follows is a miscellany of pictures taken on the day and “Fixie” Dave’s review of the day.
Six of us B's (Christina, Paula, Sue F, Ken, Tony Hr, & Dave ) left the starting blocks at 11am We were the third group to leave Weybridge, heading off for the Hare & Hounds at Donkey Town.
Whilst on our way passing over the M25, an air containment problem occurred! Ken was the unfortunate one, which allowed the following group to gain a glimpse of us.
The Lunch at the Hare & Hounds was very good, and the staff very friendly.
Four of us stopped for afternoon Tea/Coffee at Weybridge Garden centre. I believe that Peter T designed & timed the ride thus, so that we would miss any Rain!
So, thank you Peter for a well-designed ride.
Dawn Moriarty led six riders and I led four to Walton Bridge instead of to Weybridge as we knew that there would be some weather cover under which we could drink our coffees at Walton. Both groups went along the track to Weybridge, up Woburn Hill and around to Chertsey Bridge. We then followed Thames Side to Ferry lane and my group were given a brief history of Laleham Abbey, again. We joined the B376 turned left along Squire's Bridge Road, turning off right into Charlton Lane and found our way for lunch at The Goat at Upper Halliford. Eating outside was a rather cold affair and we were glad to get a little warmer by pedalling over to Hampton Court Bridge via the back track around Sunbury. Along the way the heavens opened so we took shelter until the rain had eased but large puddles were everywhere. It was then home by the quickest route and nobody mentioned a tea stop.
|Thanks to Maureen for this map|
Have you ever wished to contact everybody in SWLDA to ask a question about how to adjust your mech, vent your spleen, present a viewpoint, sell/buy a bike or component, comment on CUK or the latest letter to the Times about cycling and the Highway Code, or our new covid cycling procedures?
With the overwhelming effects of Covid19 on our lives and our cycling and in these days of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, all of which seem to have passed over my head, I am somewhat surprised that the instinct for social interaction has left our members unmoved by the existence of our very own Forum.
How many of you realise that we have a Forum to bring us together for just such a purpose? My last post on this Forum was in December 2018, to ask where everybody was hiding. Response: 0 degrees C. Since that time my cycling has become 0 degrees C.
It may be that interest in our Forum is still in negative territory. It may be that membership has churned so much that nobody even realises that it is there. Why not give it a try. Do not be put off by the fact that it is shared with KPRC.
Why not raise your eyes above the cursor and click on the FORUM tab.
What do you think?
Last year’s October ride from Weybridge, and the previous year, headed for the Surrey Hills in bright sunshine to view the autumn colours, so what could possibly go wrong in 2020?
Clearly others were optimistic too, as we mustered 19 in 4 groups at the start, an increase over previous years, and as I rode to the start in sunshine and light winds optimism seemed justified.
Our lunch destination was The Compasses in Gomshall, rarely visited by us, possibly because it is rather too close. Reports culled from the archives in 2012 and 2013 were good. But for this year it possessed that vital facility, a covered outside eating area, enabling us to remain strictly legal, though not altogether warm.
Departures went well with very separate groups leaving promptly. We took the newly surfaced path from Weybridge Station through the Brooklands banking and straight down the runway/go-kart track/skate park. Muddy Lane was muddier than on the recce but still passable.
Thereafter it was mainly familiar lanes. I had incorporated a loop up to Winterfold and down past Peaslake for a longer morning session, to be compensated by a short after lunch route to get people home before it was too dark. Recces confirmed that the route was ok and there was a bailout route from Shere if needed.
First off was Steve Duffin’s group. He reports:
I arrived at Cafe One in the High Street at 9.30 am having emailed my group members to meet there in order to keep separate from everyone else including B riders. I suggested our first group of A riders set off at 10 to allow for better gapping between groups. So, Neil Warland, Dave Ward, Simon and I left at 10 am, picking up Mark Gladwyn en route at Weybridge Station. The route through Brooklands was really unusual and out into the countryside past Byfleet and through Ripley was dry and very pleasant. It started raining going out of Shere, but not badly, but the waterproofs were justified. The roads were busy and full of mud from the banks, nevertheless we arrived at the pub in light rain at 12.08 pm.
Ten minutes after we arrived the heavens opened with heavy rain. After that, the third group arrived led by Neil Crocker, quickly followed by Frances' second group. We tried drying out with a space heater, but it was ineffective. We left at 1.15 losing Mark Gladwyn who kindly tried to help Mike Morley with a broken derailleur hanger on his new electric bike. We cycled in dry weather until Ryka's Cafe where Dave decided to carry on home. A wise choice because I got caught in heavy rain at about 3.30 in Epsom.
The ride was very pretty with the autumn leaves and the unusual route was appreciated by everyone. It was so good to see everyone out, despite the rain, so thanks to you all!
Second group was led by Frances Stewart:
We set off promptly and by the time we got to our first climb Staple Lane everyone was truly warmed up. The weather changed to light rain so we continued through Shere and headed for Winterfold. Beautiful autumnal colours kept us smiling and we arrived on time at 12.45 for lunch. Strange to see we had been overtaken by Neil's group but perhaps they were not as nutty as us to keep pedalling in the rain!
It cleared by our departure and turned out to be a lovely afternoon so we continued without tea stop. I believe most of us got home dry or close to it.
A lovely route and great groups who helped keep me on track throughout the day.
Next was Neil Crocker with Brian, Ged, Dave Jackson:
Unlike last week's cultural extravaganza, this week's theme was to be autumn colours and rain. We did however stop to marvel at the banking of the Brooklands racing circuit and then look through the gates of the Brooklands Museum at the Concorde.
The rain started as we passed Wisley but didn't amount to much until it started to get much heavier as we descended Combe Lane. In Shere we sheltered under a building for a few minutes to see if the rain would stop. When it abated a bit we started to climb up the hill out of Shere but the rain returned even heavier than before. My glasses steamed up, I couldn't read the Garmin, and I wasn't enjoying it much. So I made a decision - rather than turn right towards the hills I turned left towards lunch.
There were murmurings in the peloton about being off-route but within three minutes the route miraculously reappeared on the Garmin! A quick roll downhill and we were at The Compasses for lunch.
The afternoon was a relaxed ride back to Dorking followed by the climb of Little Switzerland in glorious sunshine and blue skies.
Finally, my group comprised John Bassett, Alan Imeson, newcomer Steve Foster, and ever vigilant Dave Bartholomew as back marker.
For us the rain started around Brooklands, but but did not amount to much in the morning. However we became very aware of how much it must have rained earlier with the roads a sea of mud around Winterfold and Peaslake. With one puncture (mine) and a minor mechanical we arrived at The Compasses around 1.45, just as Neil’s group were leaving.
We met Mike Morley at the pub, nursing a very broken looking bike, but thankfully he was taken home shortly after by his daughter. Mike, we all hope you are ok, and are now reunited with your bike.
Lunch took a while, Dave’s cheese sandwich seemingly stretching the resources of the kitchen. I felt rather embarrassed as he had to watch us enjoying our various hot meals.
We were back on the road at 3pm, the peloton declining the opportunity of a direct route home in favour of a climb up to Abinger. Unfortunately on the final climb of Hollow Lane up to the A25 we were overtaken by a huge hailstorm, and with hardly any shelter I felt very cold. Thereafter it was a cold descent on the A25 to Balchins Lane and a muddy entry to Dorking on the cycle path. Not surprisingly there were no takers for tea in the open at Ryka’s and we split up there. I’m sure everyone was very wet, but hopefully all got home without further incident.
Special thanks to Dave Bartholomew for back marking in such conditions, especially following a long wait for his lunch.
Thanks everyone for coming out yesterday, and especially the ride leaders for guiding their groups throughout the day.
Welcome to winter riding. Next Wednesday will be better weather!