Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 3, 2022

Summer Tour 2022 part 3

Leaving Scotland I frantically tried to find us a B&B for the night and was so glad my friend Margaret, who I was in Portugal with in February, showed me how to use a booking site.

Welcome tonBelfast

Arriving in Belfast, we followed Komoot to get to a lovely little place a few miles in the north of the city. We got a pizza from a place within walking distance and were soon tucked up in bed.

Next day , we set off South and picked up EV1 on the river Lagan. This is a lovely route that winds it’s way out of the city and through the beautiful Lagan meadow where we saw swans with cygnets.

River Lagan
Millennium post waymarker
Swan family

By now it was beautifully sunny and warm and we wound along the Lagan valley into Lisburn with its arts centre. Here we had a break for second breakfast before continuing to follow EV1 part of the Atlantic coast route. We came across this little place.

Lisburn arts centre

We were so pleased to get ice cream from the little freezer with its honesty box. So lovely to be trusted.

Eventually, we came off the route to get to Lurgan where DH’s cousin lives and had offered a bed for the night. We had a lovely time catching up as we haven’t seen them in about 5 years.

June 8th was another sunny day to start and we had a route planned to go to Oldcastle to visit fellow cycle tourer Jill again another companion in Portugal. This was our longest day and possibly a bit too much. Komoot planned a fairly straight but hilly route which meant we used more battery power than usual. It was so pretty though cycling through Armagh county and then into Eire. When we got to Castle Blaney, we found a cafe and had a lovely lunch while we were allowed to plug the batteries in to get some more charge into them.

It was a bit of a struggle up and down and I can remember going “Oh No!”. DH wondered what was wrong as he was behind me and hadn’t seen yet another climb. There was one point when I was ahead and didn’t realise DH had exhausted his battery and rode about 3 miles without assistance. I felt impressed to stop and he caught me up. Then we were able to share my spare battery and we were soon at my friends. Phew nearly 75 miles and 4525ft of climbing.

J was in the throes of wedding preparations for her daughter but gave us a bed for a couple of nights

. She suggested going to Lough Crew which is a group of megalithic tombs with some rare art work. We cycled up to a campsite and then had to hike up the hill as it’s the highest point in County Meath. There were a few guides who told us about the site and it was brilliant as it was totally free.

J’s house
The walk to Lough Crew
Old castle

In the evening , J contacted another cycle tourer further south, who was actually on her way back from the Wild Atlantic way and she and her partner were willing to accommodate us down in Allenwood.

Greenway

This was another super day, although on road they were quiet. This route kept us west of Dublin so it was all new territory to us. Second breakfast was in Raharney and then we stocked up in a little store that sold everything. A bit further on , at D’Arcy’s Bridge we picked up EV2 on the Royal canal for some pleasant miles before heading further south towards the grand canal to be welcomed by Sam who showed us where to camp in their garden and then fed us the most delicious home made soup. He used to be a chef!!

Vee arrived a bit later than she expected so we didn’t have much time to talk.

During the evening, I made arrangements for a pod outside Graiguenamanagh. So after breakfast we set off in a southerly direction through Kildare and Athy on minor roads. Then we got onto a busier road until we came to a likely looking spot for Second breakfast was at but it was quite cool so I was glad of the decision for the pod and there was the odd bit of rain. It wasn’t anywhere near as bad as we expected though so what a bonus.

There was an interesting sign board that showed that clay and coal slag had been processed here and in the local area to provide fuel for the poor. The way things are going , we might need some like this again.

culm Crusher

As per usual , at days end there was a climb but the pod was ideal and so cosy. There was also a very convenient Aldi in the small town.

Pod
Cozy bed

Today would be hopefully the end of the Eire part of our trip as we made our way South eastwards through County Wexford again on minor roads in a fairly straight line. It wasn’t so hilly which was so good. We had a stop in Taghmon but continued on to Rosslare. We saw a cross up on a hillside south of here.

Getting to the port, I was able again to get tickets for the next ferry which was supposed to leave at 5.30pm.

Vintage Riley

As we queued up we were with motorbikes and vintage cars which were Riley’s from 1930-36. Great they are still going.

On the ferry with the

I tried to get a B&B but no luck but I did contact a campsite who said they would stay open for us. As it was the ferry left over an hour late and as we didn’t get off the ferry until nearly 11pm we were a bit concerned but had faith everything would work out.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 3, 2022

Summer Tour part 2

Setting out from Broom Fisheries we headed back towards Annan to pick up NCN7 along the road towards Powfoot where we stayed some years ago. The campsite has been really developed with cabins right on the Solway and was quite busy in the cafe. We just rode through following the Komoot app and NCN 7 into Ruthwell where the savings bank museum is located. Timmy Mallett rode this way a few weeks ago on his ongoing tour.

Ruthwell

Contingency on we continued gentle climbing and this is the only Belted Galloway cow we saw on the entire tour.

Loved how this sign had been painted to resemble a Belted Galloway

Not too long after there was some downhill into Dumfries and we recognised places we had been last year. The river looked lovely but it was quite cool and we rode through a park that was setting up for some sort of event.

Dumfries

Leaving the county town , we were into open countryside , with quiet roads on this Platinum Jubilee weekend and saw this beauty on a post box in a tiny village. As you can imagine I had to stop to photograph it.

Crocheted postbox cover

Then we were in a really quiet road and saw only one car as we cycled on for miles of gently rugged countryside. We joined a more main road at Balmaclellan to ride down to Ken Bridge where our campsite was for the night. There was no-one about so we pitched up and paid up later. It was quiet near the river although there is. Bridge nearby.

Next morning we rode away from Bridge of Ken across it through New Galloway and up to Clatteringshaws loch.

Clatteringshaws loch

Now, diverting away from NCN7 to the national byway called the Queens Way which reminded us of riding in Norway with its pine trees.

Galloway Forest

Then unbeknownst to us we were soon in Newton Stewart down by the river where we stopped to second breakfast.

Near Newton Stewart
DH at the picnic bench

Setting off Again, we were on very quiet roads with virtually no traffic as we rode along in a bright but cool wind past wind turbines and through New Luce and and along to Castle Kennedy where we had to join the main road. Komoot would have taken us off on an overgrown footpath but we just ignored it.

The A77 goes up to the ferry port at Caen Ryan but is a bit hazardous . NCN 7 goes to Stranraer but there are no ferries there now. There is a short stretch of cycle track but it comes to an abrupt end without a dropped kerb. Then you have to take your chances with the lorries thundering along to the port.

As we entered Caen Ryan a new bit of cycleway starts and I was eager to get up onto it. Unfortunately, the trailer hit the kerb and I was left sprawled on the road. Fortunately, it was just outside the police station so there was plenty of help and I was ok apart from bad bruising on my inner thighs from the bike frame. I was so thankful for the drivers who stopped and helped as well as the police who repeatedly asked if I needed medical attention. But those who know me well, know I am determined to the point of stupidity sometimes. Still no real harm done

We manage to get the next Stena ferry to Belfast. I refused point blank to use P&O and if Stena couldn’t take us, we wouldn’t have gone to Ireland.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | June 26, 2022

Summer Tour 2022 part 1

This was the tour where we weren’t really sure where we would end up as we had no bookings for anything .

We agreed to head north and west with the vague idea that we might go to Ireland but nothing definite. So as my brother lives near the Angel of the North and they would put us up for the night, we used our usual route north until we got to South Hetton and then headed off left towards Washington.

Near Washington lunch stop
East Bridge over the River Wear

Soon after this, we were on a cycle track without any traffic and then suddenly we popped out onto a track on the side of the Sunderland Highway and then it was just a short way to the Angel of the North Fishing Lakes our destination for the night.

Next morning , my brother got up to see us off ( not usual for him to be up so early) and we headed off to cross the A1 on the foot bridge we used a few months ago.

A1 crossing

Stupidly narrow barriers meant we had had to unload our luggage to get through which was a bit of a chore but then we were underway. The way was very quiet through an industrial estate before a lovely green belt ride through to Dustin and past the Metro Centre

Angel of the North
River Tyne

It’s a nice ride up the river Tyne through Blaydon but near Royston we found that the Keelmans way was blocked so we had to cross the river onto NCN72 Hadrians Wall cycleway. This took us up through Wylam to cross the river again and then up to Ovingham. It was here we reminisced about being here in 2007 with out Norwegian pal Kjell who helped a cyclist with a broken chain as he had a spare repair link.

We carried on along the route up to Corbridge where we stopped in the sunshine for lunch. We recognised the route to Hexham from previous years but it was very busy as the Northumberland county show was on. We were glad not to be riding behind the cars trying to get in to the car parks.

Just outside of Hexham , after riding along the riverside path, we came to the railway crossing.

Crossing the railway near Hexham

Passing through Warden and Fourstones , the climbing began quite steeply and we are so pleased to have the assistance on our Koga World Traveller e-bikes. Under warm sunshine we reached the summit of Hadrians wall.

Summit of Hadrians Wall
millennium milepost

After a bit more climbing and descending, to try and find the campsite, we came down almost to the A68 near Bardon Mills. This was Brockalee Farm campsite and it was lovely. We soon got pitched up and then watched the farmer with his young sheepdog rounding up his Jacob sheep for practice.

Round up time

If you want to know why they are called Jacob sheep look at Genesis chapter 30 in the Bible .

Next morning was cool enough for our wind proof, waterproof jackets as we got onto the A68 for a couple of miles and then onto a minor road south of the main road. First hold up of the day was cattle being herded along the road.

Cattle traffic jam

We were soon in Haltwhistle and we used the Co-op to stock up for some supplies. The we were climbing again onto the cycleway up to Greenhead with more gates.

More gates

After this we soon saw a number of scarecrows along the way into Gilsland.

Roman soldier scarecrow

There were so many but I won’t post them all but they did amuse me. By now , the sun was coming out as we continued along NCN 72 with beautiful views .

Part of Hadrians wall

Near Banks

Here , we departed from NCN 72 and headed north to join up with NCN10 and on into Hethersgill for lunch on the corner.

Lunch stop Hethersgill
Hethersgill church

We carried on along NCN 10 and ten changed to NCN7 north of Carlisle. When we got to Westlington I couldn’t resist taking this photo.

Westlington

Then we continued along to Gretna and then onto Annan where we had a campsite booked on Broom Farm fisheries.

Broom Farm fisheries.

We were now well into Scotland. So where to from here?

Posted by: brendaintheboro | May 29, 2022

End of May- really?

Again , the weather hasn’t been the best but we have made the best of it. The old rhyme says “ March winds and April showers brings forth May flowers.” Well , we have all three together. Strong winds, heavy showers and lots of May flowers have been very evident this week

Albert Park
I love these flag irises

I took these photos on one of our rides through Albert Park here in Middlesbrough on one of the couple of times we rode across it.

Actually on Thursday we had a couple of rides including getting shopping. On Friday, I had decided to meet up with one of the friends I met up with last week. She is also 71yo and is planning to swim the Great North Swim next weekend and as she has never swam in a lake , she wanted to try it. Near to Bolton on Swale where we rode a couple of weekends ago, is Ellerton Lakes. Unfortunately, it was so very windy, so we had a morning ride to Sadberge and then we drove across there.

Coming back from Sadberge, was like having wings as we flew home with a following wind. It was also so lovely to have lunch at the cafe and meet with L after her swim. She said the waves kept slapping her in the head. I do hope it’s not as windy for her next weekend.

Look at the flags blowing in the wind at Sadberge

I didn’t feel too well on Friday evening and had to go to bed. By Saturday morning, I was feeling much better and we decided to just have a shorter ride . We decided to go to Hartlepool via Saltholme bird reserve. I have to say they have improved the surface of the path there.

View across to the Transporter Bridge

We couldn’t get out at the far end as they have installed lockable gates. They are supposed to open when you approach but they didn’t. I did find a volunteer who let us out and says if it happens again , to just ring the number on the poster. This applies to going in or out

We rode along the coast road until we got to Seaton Carew and then onto the promenade there. Once in Hartlepool, I was looking for a new to me quilting supply shop called Alan Tether after its owner. I couldn’t get what I need to finish my quilt but did enjoy the chance to see all the fabrics. I really couldn’t justify buying anymore.

While there I was intrigued by a group of strangely dressed people.

Detectives on tour

I couldn’t resist going over to ask them what they were doing, seems they are a group of work friends who were on a sleuthing day around Hartlepool looking for clues to solve 4 mysteries. They were obviously having a good laugh.

During the week I also had a chance to sew a Greenstyle Creations Rally skirt with its secret cycle shorts with pockets. It went together beautifully.

Rally skirt
Secret pockets in the attached cycle shorts

The fabric is very bright , just right for cycling.

So this week rode 81 miles , and YTD is 1352 miles

Don’t be concerned if I don’t post for a few weeks. We hope to be off on a cycle camping trip but not sure exactly sure where as yet.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | May 22, 2022

Not much cycling but a fabulous day

Let me say at the start, I did 3 short rides during this week partly due to weather but also because on the best weather day, I had a meet up with people I haven’t seen in about 55 years.

I drove up to South Shields but DH decided he would cycle up and back home. Not quite a 100 miles for him that I think he regards as his birthday ride.

Way back in about 1963, I was recruited into the newly formed South Shields Volunteer Lifeguards and we patrolled the beaches up there. I was a very competent swimmer at the age of 12. I am not sure if this photograph was taken in 1963 or 64 but we were competing and winning lifeguard competitions.

SSLG about 1963 from left to right, Ethnie, Jean, Joanne,Linda, Penney and me

I was very young then but looked older. Here we are, 5 of us have been traced by Peter Newby and brought us together.

Only Linda was missing from the photo

It was so lovely to reminisce and Joanne had brought along her orange Speedo costume. We were the original Baywatch girls. We competed and won the national championships , I think it was 3 times and even represented GB in Trier in Germany in 1969.

Original Speedo costume
Me at the back carrying the legs

We all agreed that our lifestyle back in the day, the disciple of training and our dedication has paid off big time . One of the girls not in the original team still sea swims 3 times a week as she lives so near the sea.

About 1968 or 9

One of the things I just wish , is that I hadn’t been so hung up about my “big” legs. It haunted me for many decades and my husband has said he is so glad I have such strong legs. I also have a lot of stamina which I put down to the years, sea swimming miles and miles , that has stood me in good stead all these years. I hope you don’t mind me sharing my joy.

So this week I only cycled 50 miles and YTD 1271 miles.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | May 15, 2022

A Grand Day Out.

The weather hasn’t been too good this past week and so I didn’t think the mileage would be that much. It was DH’s birthday last Friday and he usually does a 100+mile ride but Friday was awful – wind gusting over 40mph and some rain. He didn’t want to go and will do it in the next week or so. I wasn’t too keen on riding in strong winds after last weeks tumble but the forecast for Saturday was good. Would DH take that opportunity to go on his solo ride. No we spent it together.

We had an early start and decided we would head for Bolton on Swale. This has the church that has reopened its doors to travellers with self service drinks on offer plus toilet facilities . We did a short detour on the way there to Moulton as I hoped there might be lemon drizzle cake for sale in the bus shelter. Unfortunately, there wasn’t, so it was on through Scorton and into St Mary’s at Bolton on Swale so see the memorial.

Interestingly, this has a memorial to a Henry Jenkins who was reputed to be the longest living person dying at the age of 169. His birth wasn’t registered as this wasn’t a requirement until 1538. It’s a fascinating story if you want to look it up. Seventy five years after his death , he local subscription paid for this memorial.

Henry Jenkins Memorial
1743 memorial
St Mary’s Bolton on Swale- clock not working

We sat outside in the sunshine to have part of our second breakfast before setting out again . We were on a B road but it wasn’t too busy and we passed Kiplin Hall and on to Great Langton. Here we joined NCN 71 through Kirkby Fleetham and then on to Leeming. It was fun to remember when we sheltered in a bus stop near here last year on the start of our Golden Wedding Tour .

We called at friends but sadly they weren’t at home so we headed on an off road track back up to the main road and on to Morton on Swale where we turned off onto Potter Lane. This was a Komoot route but it soon became an off road track. Luckily , our e-bikes can cope. It’s the gates that become the irritant as it’s stop /start.

Getting through gates.
Soon it was just grass with no real track

DH got up onto the top of banking that helps protect the land from the river and that was better riding. We were also sheep herding!

Eventually, we emerged onto a farm track which was part of the bridleway and we came into the village of Maunby. This was new to us with a nice village green. However, we knew we would be passing through South Otterington and it’s seating near the church where we sat to finish off our breakfast boxes.

Onwards , we crossed the A167 and rode up to Thornton le Moor and then continued onwards and upwards on Thief Hole lane and onto the Thirsk road. Up here there were a number of protest signs as it appears that a company wants to build an egg factory. As one sign said very wittily I thought ‘Pluck off’.

We then turned up to Thornton Le Beans andfrom here it was mainly downhill with lovely views if it hadn’t been so hazy.

Plenty of oil seed rape in flower

Then once in Northallerton, we rode along to Appleton Wiske where we stopped for cheese toasties, me made of course, and hot chocolate. We talked with a couple also on e-bikes and they were amazed we had already ridden 60 miles .

So we didn’t want to go down through Yarm with it’s inevitable slow moving vehicles so went across through Pictor and Crathorne to get home via Hutton Rudby. A super day of 80 miles. Yes I am a bit tired today. I have discovered I also need to drink more during the day when riding to stop cramping late in the evening. Yesterday , I drink about 3 litres while out plus drinks at home and no cramps .

This weeks total 112 miles YTD1221 miles

Posted by: brendaintheboro | May 8, 2022

Bumps and bruises but still going strong

Got a good start to the week getting out on Tuesday for a short ride locally . Got home just as the rain started so that was good.

Thursday was my quilt group AGM so I wasn’t out cycling even though the weather was excellent .

So Friday saw us ready for a fairly long ride. We prefer to head into the wind hoping that it will assist us on the homeward journey. Consulting the weather forecast decided us to head south as the wind was supposed to be south westerly.

I suggested that we head towards Northallerton but go over the off-road track to Brompton. So we set off about 9am and rode across to Thornaby and then on towards Maltby. On the way we encountered a lady on a small wheeled bicycle who had a puncture so we had to stop and help. Unfortunately, the valve meeting the tube point, was worn and had a rip. We did try but it was no good. She was appreciative of us trying to help.

So , back on our way , it was on to Roger Lane, through Hilton and up to Hutton Rudby. I have to say the hedgerows are blooming and the wild flowers are beautiful from the short lived dandelions to these tiny blue beauties.

We road to East Rounton and then turned off towards East Harlsey and climbed up until the turning signed for West Harlsey riding between the fields. The view from the top is lovely , but it was a bit hazy.

The golden glow of oil seed rape in the distance
A view to the west

At the bottom , we were temporarily held up waiting for a train to pass but this gave us a chance to chat with some lads on lightweight road bikes. Then they headed off to Deighton and we took the off road route to Brompton.

Plastic covering newly planted crops
I loved the wavy lines

When we got into Brompton , we decided not to carry on to Northallerton and stopped near a beautiful green spot. It has been spread with various types of seeds to attract wild life

Brompton

Then we returned home our usual way through Yarm

The winds on Saturday did a complete turn about coming from the north so we decided to ride over to Durham, the reverse of last weeks ride. Unfortunately, when we got towards I had a fall on slurry at the crossing of the A167.

Poor surface
Careful crossing here

However, despite that , a lovely thing happened. A driver on the opposite carriageway saw me go down , went up to the roundabout and came back to check on me. By then, I was back up on my feet assisted by DH. Luckily, there was no real damage to the bike or me so I decided to carry on through.

Actually I think it was the best decision as it kept my leg moving and we rode along through Shildon where I stopped to take a photo of this old water fountain

Water fountain unfortunately not working but looks good

From here it was over to Bishop Auckland and on the old railway line Bishop Auckland to Brandon. Once there, it’s on to the Lanchester path turning off on NCN 70 into Durham. We had a bit of a problem following the signage as we wanted to head across to NCN 1. There has been so much building work going on. We ended up near Finchale Priory where we used to kayak to many years ago. So it was back into Durham and we found a way up Claypath and up through Gilesgate to Sherburn. Then we knew our way to Haswell so off we went home

Bruising not pretty

This was the state of my knee when we got home. Bad bruising but no real damage done. I am either a tough cookie or barmy idiot?

Mileage this week 138 miles. YTD 1109 miles

Posted by: brendaintheboro | May 1, 2022

Full Spring

Here we are on the May Day bank holiday. We had a couple of days away cycling but not camping.

We didn’t want to be away all weekend so on Thursday set off to cycle to my brother’s home in Jarrow. The weather has been dry for weeks so we were very happy to ride up the Castle Eden walkway following part of a nationcycle route- I am not sure if it’s NCN1 or 14. It might be a combination of both.

When we got up past Hurworth burn, we stopped to chat to a dogwalker who wanted to tell us about his mountain biking adventures. As he is now in his early 60’s he is seriously thinking about an e-bike.

Then we were caught up by a chap who was fully equipped with camping gear. He is on his way up to Inverness having got a free pass from his wife to take advantage of the current rail ticket pricing for his return journey. He asked if we knew the route well. Oh yes, we know the places to avoid so he asked if he could tag along. We took him up through Haswell and then took the road through Sunderland and along the coast round to the Shields ferry. Keith, I hope you have a super journey. He lives in the town over from us , so we hope we might see him around about.

There are so many wild flowers blooming so it’s a delight to be on the tracks.

Cherry blossom
Dandelions

We had a lovely stay with my brother who is currently looking after his son’s Bordeaux mastiff. This is due to his son having a serious accident coming off his bicycle and shattering his leg. Duke is a giant softie and despite his bark when we first arrived , he was so contented all the time. I did get to go out for a walk with my brother and the dog.

Our intention had been to visit a cousin on the other side of the river Tyne but unfortunately, he is down with Covid. As the weather forecast for Friday was sunny we decided to return home taking a different route.

Friday had us on different tracks from those we usually ride through the outskirts of Jarrow and on up towards Gateshead area.

Cowslips

Some sort of marsh plant
Bowes railway path sculpture
Part of the sculpture
DH on the road crossing

We were using part of the Keelman’s way and then onto the Bowes railway path. We tried it a few years ago and the surface was dire but it has really been upgraded in long stretches- just not long enough. But those whose read regularly know , we don’t give up.

After crossing through the car park of the Bowes railway museum, we came to another off road path that was quite gravelly and I had to walk down it. I don’t want to risk a fall in the middle of know where. At the bottom of this long hill, we came across this “diversion”.

Diversion for cyclists – NOT!

I had a walk down and talked to one of the workmen who told me we would have to use the pedestrian track. Another walk through bushes on rocky tracks and we had to negotiate a not good gate.

DH had to upend the cycles to get through

So even taking off the panniers that gate was just too small to get a bicycle through. Then we had to negotiate a bridge and come down steps on the other side.

Bridge over the A1
Steps on bridge

On the left side was a trough for a bicycle wheel but not with a loaded bike!,

The weather was lovely and we stopped and bought a meal deal in Chester lê Street before riding on to find a seat in Framwellgate on the outskirts of Durham. It was so lovely to sit in the sunshine

Durham cycle path

So we were soon into Durham and we rode through without stopping and found our way to the Brandon to Bishop Auckland railway path. It was a lovely ride through to Bishop and then along the path from Shildon to Newton Aycliffe where we had another refreshment stop. Then it was on a usual route through Stockton and home. 104 miles

Saturday was a day to have a short ride as although rain was forecast, it was sunny. We had some business to take care of, so we incorporated that too. One highlight was stopping for a Scone at Fiona’s Farm ‘shop’. We had our own jam and hot chocolate to enjoy sitting on their picnic bench.

On the way back we called at friends. Sarah has been taking a bee keeping course and one of the interesting thing she has learned is that bees stick to one type of flower. Dandelions or lavender. You live and learn. So if you buy those packets of mixed seeds to help the bees , they might not be as useful as you think.lês

This weeks mileage 121 miles and 971 miles YTD.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | April 19, 2022

A Very Happy Easter

On Maundy Thursday , we set off from home and rode across to Darlington and then took the main road up to Cockerton. From here we got on to the Staindrop road. Traffic was light and the sun was out so it was a lovely seeing all the new lambs gambolling in the fields that were separated by dry stonewalls. There are so many varieties of spring flowers blooming on the verges and the hawthorn hedges are white with blossom. Spring is here.

We stopped and had a refreshment break once in Staindrop and soon after we turned off the main road into Barnard Castle as traffic was increasing. On the small side road, we went down through South Cleatlam and on into Little Newsham. I had ridden here a few weeks ago when I had to abort my trip.

So we were soon into Barnard Castle and DH said to follow Komoot. I had a feeling that we should go left but turned right. Bad move.

Crossing point for bicycles on NCN route

We didn’t want to ride back up the hill , so unhitched the trailers and manhandled the bikes and trailers separately across the Deepdale aqueduct .

River Tees with castle in the background

We turned and climbed up from the river to the camping and caravanning club site at Lartington. We have been members for over 30 years and know the rules. So we got a pitch for the night but couldn’t get the bike batteries charged. No hook up available but they wanted to charge £3 per battery. The lady in a caravan next to us was going out and she too thought the charge was too high , let us plug in to her socket. Really pleased about that.

Next day, we headed back through Barnard Castle and along to Whorlton

.

View across the valley, oil seed rape fields are all in bloom

We to detour back through Winston and as we rode upstage hill we saw these Gipsy caravans. Probably will be at Appleby horse fair later in the year.

Horses for the caravans

From here we rode on through Richmond and stopped for refreshments in the priory gardens .

Then we rode along through Catterick garrison and there are some nice cycle paths through here. Then it was along towards Masham but we came across a road closed sign. We saw a chap walking his dog and asked if f we could get through. His answer made us laugh. “If THEY could party when they shouldn’t, you can get through.”

So we cycled off down the road and came to the blockage.

This was easy to get through but then further on , we had to do more lifting. Once over these troughs, we could cycle on to another fence that also needed shifting to get around. Still it saved at least adding another 6 miles.

So we were soon at a set of more road works just before Masham and on to Grewelthorpe. Just too late for the community cafe but one of the chaps remembered us from last year and retrieved a couple of brownies from the freezer. So kind of them.

We carried on into Richmond where we stopped to eat again and in addition bought the most delicious ice cream cornet from the little van on the market square. Although , the only sold small or medium size, the medium size was huge. So enjoyable.

Then it was on and camped up at Boroughbridge where we did get a hook up so everything was able to be charged up. We had a very comfortable night and had a fairly dry pack next morning

We chose to make a different route down to Riccall as we knew that the planet track was closed. This route was hillier and straighter and took us down through Whitley and Cattal before riding into Tockwith with its memorial to a flight that went down in 1945 killing both the crew and the postmaster.

Tockwith memorial

Then as the sun started to come through we had a second breakfast in Long Marston.

Long Marston

After this we were soon down onto the cycle track alongside the A64 and then crossing it and riding along to the Planet track. We stayed on this until Naburn and then took a small track off onto a very minor road until we went through Stillingfleet.

Just after this, I got a puncture on one of my trailer wheels. Fortunately, we had a spare inner tube so we got that changed quickly. Then on to Riccall where we bought delicious bread from Pickled at Riccall.

We got a lovely reception from Peggy and Rod at South Newlands farm. DS 1 drove up later and made us a delicious BBQ. He left early on Sunday morning to drive home.

Sunday saw us off to church in Selby and we heard that the Planet track had reopened so we checked it out. It had and relaid so far. We took the rest of the day , very quietly and enjoyed the sunshine.

During the night , it rained heavily and we could hear it come across in waves. So Monday saw us up at first light, and we packed up quickly. DH packing the sleeping equipment while I made us egg sandwiches as 1st breakfast. So we were on the road just after 8am, crossing the traffic on the A19 and on to the Planet track.

It has been resurfaced as far as Escrick sidings but then deteriorates again but they have done the worst part . We were soon up in York and again had to divert off the usual track due to roadworks. There is also a new part of cycleway near the water meadows towards Radcliffe.

We stopped at Tollerton but got our seats out as the bench was still wet. Pressing on we rode up to Asenby and along through Northallerton to stop on the green at Brompton. Now on “home turf” we powered on the usual way home.

So 220 miles for the trip bring my YTD to 850 miles.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | April 10, 2022

A couple of rides

Didn’t ride the early part of the week and then on Thursday I went to my quilt group. I intended to do a short ride after that but it was raining and windy so I didn’t bother.

Come Friday morning the sun was out but there was frost on the ground and it was bitterly cold first thing so we didn’t leave home until 9am. We had decided to pack up our lunch too so we could be out longer. I suggested riding to Northallerton as one of my church sisters lives there. I had decided a little embroidery I had done while cycling in the Hebrides should go to her.

Don’t trust Google to take you on a direct route on a bicycle. We got to Northallerton our usual way but switched on the app for directions. I took us a 2 mile detour through the countryside and almost to Yafforth before getting us to her address .

Mind you she was so pleased to see usando delighted with the gift.

Cycling back to Brompton, we stopped at the bus shelter, just as a bus was pulling out. That gave us the time to sit and toast our sandwiches and have hot chocolate, without anyone else needing to use the shelter. From there , when we got to Deighton, we turned off and rode through East Rownton, across to Hutton Rudby and then home via Maltby and Stainton. My monitor showed 53 miles so I was pleased to still feel fine.

What to do on Saturday. DH wanted to have time to cut grass for a friend so we decided on a shorter trip going along to Redcar byway of the Trunk Road. This meant we largely had a following wind. The waves were crashing in but there were not many people on the prom, so it was an easy ride particularly not having to avoid dogs on long leads.

Not a Banksy, but these cartoons are appearing across the area

Once in Marske , we decided to head homeward and rode back the way that would give us some shelter. The headwinds were still strong though so we stopped to rest in Kirkleatham grounds out of the wind. No sandwiches today but a biscuit sufficed.

Note the ski goggles – his eyes water really badly in the wind and these protect him

A lady told me about the Peter Rabbit exhibition that is on until the 22 May and is free. So I went and had a look at Beatrix Potter illustrations blown up.

Naughty Peter
Pottery

So after this we carried on home and arrived just after noon. DH went grass cutting and I worked on a table mat that I need for quilt group.

So this weeks total was 79 miles and YTD 630 miles

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