Posted by: brendaintheboro | August 2, 2020

You never know what is around the corner.

Last Sunday, we browsed the weather forecast for the week ahead and as it looked to be quite nice, I managed to book us a campsite pitch for 2 nights on Thursday and Friday.

Well, Thursday dawned and it was wet. So instead of the usual early morning start , we delayed until after 9.00am and headed off across to Stockton and followed NCN14 across to Croft.

From here we rode along to Barton unfortunately still in the rain but with slightly clearing skies. We had used the Komoot app to plan to get across to the south side of the A66 but DS1 told us not to go that way as the bridge suggested was too busy with lorries etc. So we turned for Melsonby and then we could safely cross as there is a proper crossing for both bicycles and horses a few miles out of the village. The crossing is a bit wiggly but as we knew where we were going , it wasn’t a problem. Komoot didnt seem to know it was there.

Once across it was down to Gilling West where we turned for Kirby Hill. It was pleasant following the valley bottom and soon the sun did show through the clouds so we stripped off waterproof jackets but kept the overtrousers on. The road was fairly narrow and they protected us from briars etc sticking out.

From Kirby Hill, the road started to climb up towards Newsham , and it was steeper than it looked. Thank goodness for the e-bikes as we were pulling our cycle trailers and has a couple of panniers each although they were lightly filled.

The views had opened up on the climb.

In Newsham there was a left turn along to Barningham which was where I saw this water trough.

Barningham water trough

I took this image on my return journey but more of that later.

The road became ever narrower , single track with passing places and as we descended a steep hill a few miles outside the village, I warned DH of gravel across the road and a right turn to cross a bridge. I went very slowly and was across the bridge and climbing the next hill, when I heard a scream. DH says it wasn’t a scream more a loud shout! Well I looked back and all I could see was his cycle trailer right way up but not sign of him or his bike.

Coming back down, I found him under his cycle ,under a bush amongst nettles. We look back and laugh but he shouted “I think I have broken my ankle”. Not good.

So between us , we managed to get the bike off him and get him out onto his feet – well one foot really but he was determined to carry on. He used the Turbo setting and managed to cycle the 3 miles to Bowfield Farm , Boldron.

I asked if we should phone home and get a rescue but he said he thought he would be OK.

So we got his chair out and he sat while I put up the tent and the tarp. He could only hop into the tent and did his usually blowing up of the Exped mats and put out the sleeping bags. He was really hoping that he would be better by Friday but I felt he wouldn’t.

tent and tarp

This is the old Jack Wolfskin tent that I have been reproofing etc. It is about 25 years old but quite spacious and has two entrances. I managed to get it all up and we had a very happy evening laughing about the days events.

After a good night’s sleep, it became obvious that a rescue would be needed so we phoned DS1 who said he would drive straight over while I started to pack up. We had agreed that I would cycle home as when the two trailers and all his photography gear were in the back of the car there would be no room for me. Anyway, his cycle rack only takes one bicycle.

So I took a similar way home on the hottest day of the year in our area. It was boiling hot at 30C. I don’t to heat too well and was anxious to get home but did stop to take a few photos.

accident site
the offending gravel

So it was back into Barningham where I saw about 6 hand cycles being off loaded from cars .

not drinking water.

I would gladly have refilled a water bottle here but it said not too. It was restored in 2004. Maybe a should get a water filter?

lovely views

I got up the hill from Gilling West and saw that the A66 was very busy. I had to wait to cross the south side carriage but the north side was a tail back from Scotch Corner and I indicated to a driver , who had bicycles on a rear carrier, that I needed to be just where he was parked over. He waited for me to wiggle through onto the track

Once across, i came to these lovely teasle plants.

Teasles beginning to bloom

From there I decided I would head to the coffee shop in Eppleby and so I could have a cake and get my water bottles refilled. I also bought an Ice lolly and out that in one bottle to help keep it cool.

It was blazing hot in the afternoon and I have never been so thankful for a cold shower.

In the meantime, DH had been x-rayed and while not a full blown fracture, he has pulled a bit of bone off. It’s called an avulsion. It will heal so at present he is resting, icing and has started to walk today, with the aid of 2 sticks.

So this week I cycled 105 miles making YTD3963 miles

The bikes have done a lot of mileage in the 2 years we have had them. Mine has 10239 miles on the clock and DH even more at 10578 miles. We booked them in for service about a month ago but dont know how long we will be without them. In the mean time , I might just use my folder.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 26, 2020

Steep Hills

Work continues to come in and I have made the decision to keep it at 3 days a week and only doing home visits. My long term plan was always to drop to 3 days a week in December when I hit the big 7 zero. How did that happen?

So the early morning 10-15 miles rides continue on those days. Thursday was already sorted taking the car in to be serviced and MOT’d. Just as well as DH was feeling tired and it was pouring with rain.

One of the things we have been doing is to renew waterproofing on a tent we have had about 30 years or so. Its a Jack Wolfskin and still in good nick but I put in in the washed with TecWash and then with Tex 10. I do hope its worked.

We need to get away and try it before September when we are hoping to get cycling up in the Outer Hebrides. We will wait to see. Our current tent, that I made is still fine, but in high winds isnt the best as there is too much fabric to catch the wind. September is often a windy month so thinking ahead.

Friday saw us off out early to do a trip I have had on the list for a while. Its somewhere we used to cycle to many years ago when the children were small . This was from a much nearer location that where we currently live.

So off up through Great and Little Ayton and along thorough Kildale to the first climb. The weather was gloomy with clouds covering the hills and only a few spits and spots of rain.

Cleveland Hills

As we climbed up towards Kildale , I got a sweet smell that was overtaken by wood smoke.

As we rounded the corner, we saw the most beautiful sight of purple flowers , a whole field full. This was where the sweet smell came from.

a purple crop?
mystery to me flowers

If anyone knows what they are, please enlighten me.

Just after this the steep climbs began. I thought about the times I have walked up these hills.

between Kildale and Commondale

I have resisted DH’s suggestion of riding down this was but the e-bike brings such joy. Between Kildale and Commondale is a 20% hill dropping down to a cattle grid and then a hairpin bend to rise to a 25% hill. In the past I would get off at the bottom and then start the slog walking up. DH would get half way up and then come back to push my bike for me. NOT THIS TIME.

I was up that hill, admittedly using the Sport mode but I could peddle up it.

Later passing through Commondale we turned left and were soon overtaken by a roadie but it wasn’t to last. Using the power we caught him up and when nearly at the top , he told us he would wait for his friend to catch up. AS we road he talked about his cycle trips to southern European places that we have never too and we told of our Scandinavian trips.

So it was off to Lockwood Beck.

Lockwood Beck Reservoir

Soon after we joined the main Whitby road A172 which was heaving with traffic. Fortunately , we didn’t have to ride far before we were able to turn off to Stanghow.

We were very lucky to have the sun come out , find a lovely bench and have a great view to eat 2nd breakfast.

Stanghow seat

Then we road down through Lingdale and Boosbeck into Skelton down the steep hill this time.

From there, the sun began to shine and we rode into Saltburn and then along to Redcar and home vis the Trunk road and the river. What a thoroughly enjoyable day.

Saturday morning was a bit spitty and spotty rain so we only rode enough miles to get us over the 100 miles at 102 for the week.

YTD 3858 miles.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 19, 2020

A short Cycle camping trip

Woohoo!! Campsites have opened up – well some have . Some will only let you go if you have your own facilities. We are a resourceful bunch us cycle campers. More of this later.

We started to ride out usual route towards York after an early start. Northallerton was busy with people going to work so we turned off the A167 and went through Romanby and took a quiet parallel route through Warlaby and into South Otterington.

We pulled into the Layby here to take off long sleeved tops

From South Otterington we continued on the A167 down through Topcliffe and stopped on the bench in Asenby and had second breakfast.

It was as we got back onto the road towards Cundall , we hit a snag. The road was closed and no amount of persuasion would get us through. So we had to find an alternative way around. This involved turning back and going to Rainton and then into Boroughbridge.

We called into the bakers and I got the most delicious gooseberry and almond tart that we had later with custard. From Boroughbridge , we followed NCN route cannot remember the number though. It goes through Lower Dunsforth and Great Ouseburn before crossing the Ouse on the Aldwark Bridge. Due to Covid19, no one has to pay the toll at present. I hope this doesnt mean that it will deteriorate if it gets much more vehicular traffic.

Then through Linton on Ouse and on through the grounds of Benningborough Hall and into York. We stopped for a break on the banks of the Ouse near Rowntree Park before riding down to South Newlands farm.

DH inside the tent

Peggy had said that the toilet and shower were booked by someone else so we would need our “bucket and chuck it”. However, we didnt need them except this is what we used during the night.

Collapsible toilet seat.

That bucket only has the remains of the waste water from washing up in it!!

DH made this years ago in our sea kayaking days and a small bucket fits under perfectly. Only trouble is with age I now find getting up from it difficult. DH says his name is Hoistband not husband as he has to assist me to get up off it. More than you need to know but hope it gives you a laugh.

Friday saw the arrival in the car with DS1 who brought down a couple of old tents we wanted to erect and see what condition they are in. Both were still good if in need of slight attention. We may well use one if we get off up north in September.

After that, the three of us has a pootle of a ride down into Selby where they were very good about social distancing.

Selby
Selby Abbey

Although a parish church and not a cathedral, this was first established by Benedict of Auxerre in 1069, so not long after the Norman conquest. There is a lot to read on the net about it.

Later we rode along the Transpennine trail heading East and got to Hemmingborough where there is another fine church .

Hemingborough St Mary the Virgin Church

The church is a 12th century church and the 37m tall spire was added in the 15th century and can be seen from miles around. From here we followed a minor road up through South Duffield and had a break at the duck pond in Osgodby.

Osgodby duck pond.

At some stage , we got stopped by a railway crossing and I managed to get the camera out and got this shot of the train.

Train crossing.

It wasnt stopped and DS1 was convinced it would be blurred. I am pleased it wasnt , even though if flashed by.

Then it was back to the site and sitting and chatting in the sun.

Saturday saw us up with the dawn chorus and we got packed away before the tent got too wet as the rain started. DS1 took most of the gear home by car and that left us free to ride home our original planned route.

In Tollerton , I took these photos. One is the old phone box now ued to house a community library.

Tollerton library
drinking fountain and cattle trough.

If you look closely at this photo you can make out the wording on it.

Then after 2nd breakfast after 33.5 miles , in Asenby it was on homeward.

We had looked for the large trench that had been dug right across the road but only saw 2 narrow trenches that we could have easily stepped across but these days there is so much fear of people getting hurt and wanting compensation!!

So , even with stops , we were home having completed the 70 miles in 7 hours.

So this week I rode 202 miles making YTD 3756 miles

As we want our bikes servicing soon, we looked up total mileage on our Koga e-bikes and I have ridden 10,032 miles and DH has 10427miles in the 2 years we have had them.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 12, 2020

Wandering in strange ways

We have been trying to find new routes and places to go. The early part of the week I was working, so it was just short 10-12 miles in the early morning. Some days had a bit of sun but on the whole it was cool for the time of the year.

The flowers in town are very colourful and really brighten up the square and town hall.

As you see they are still encouraging people to keep clear of each other, which we are trying very hard to do.

Thursday saw us umming and aaring over where to go. So it wasn’t until about 10.00am that we finally got on the bikes and off out.

We decided to head north , with the intention of getting to Seaham just south of Sunderland. It would be on the old familiar route up through Hurworth Burn and Haswell. We saw the “old guys” I refer to as Last of the Summer Wine. If you are British you will know the comedy show from some years ago. They were sitting chatting and supposed to be bird watching.

Anyway, I digress. Once we got into South Hetton , we took the road through the village. We hadn’t used Komoot or took a paper map and ended up at a large roundabout and the sign posts for cyclists were to Easington. Well, the upshot was a long descent through Easington and down to the old colliery village of Easington Colliery.

Where the pit head was , is now a lovely nature reserve with picnic table and a good view out to sea. So here we had second breakfast. I also got bitten on my other leg. I don’t know what sort of flying bitey thing it was but my other leg now has the same rash as I got last week. I did feel it sting and itch this time though.

Easington Colliery nature reserve

We really didn’t fancy the slog back up the hill so decided to ride along to Horden. There we turned and climbed up to Peterlee and called at friends to use their facilities and then thought we were going across to Shotton. WRONG!! We actually ended up at the A19 , a motorway like road with huge lorries thundering past. We had seen a police vehicle pass us and thought if we were wrong they would have stopped us , but they just drove past. Well, there was no way I was going to cycle on the A19 although that is what DH wanted to do. There was also no way back as the road we had come on was one way.

Well, we got onto the verge and pushed the bikes for a few hundred yards , then over a bridge and on to the off slip road. Then we found another road leading to Haswell and followed the route back.

The old guys were still sitting where we had left them hours before and it was time to eat again. Out came the stove and I made cheese toasties. Both they and the passing dogs could smell them. We had a bit of banter as we didn’t have any to share.

As that ride was nearly 60 miles , we took it easy on Friday, only cycling out to Cowpen Bewley and back.

That left us fresh for another adventure on Saturday. There were 2 options but looking at the weather forecast we decided to head to Bedale in North Yorkshire.

I decided to put it into Komoot and see how it would route us. Well, we found tracks we didn’t know about one a couple of miles from home that we will use again if going to Hutton Rudby. It involved a curly whirly bridge.

Its been there years and I have driven under it but never realised it is a cycle path.

So up through Hutton Rudby and over the A19 near East Rounton where we were last week. However, this time we followed Komoot and it took us off on a gravel track which wasn’t too bad to start with but then deteriorated with large water filled holes. DH rode them but I got off and walked – didn’t want to fall off or in the water.

Even a small gate to get through

Well, that track ended and we were on a road only to be taken off on another track. We knew where we were at the road end and could have taken the main road to Brompton but I was curious to see where we would go. DH was a bit moany about the gravel bits though. We came into Brompton on a lane I didn’t know existed.

So we were on the road into Northallerton and then through Romanby and kept taking every turn Komoot instructed us too. Some where just little diversions off the main road so eventually , we arrived in Leeming and called to see good friends there for a brief garden chat.

Jill makes these lovely mushrooms in her kiln. Very pretty they look too.

Pottery Mushrooms by Jill

On the way out of Leeming village we saw this lovely old car – an Austin apparently circa 1930.

Old Austin

Apparently , it belongs to a lady who lives locally and had popped down to see someone nearby. Funnily enough, later , while crossing the road to cycle to Kirkby Fleetham, we saw a very old bus which was from the same era. I didn’t get the camera out quick enough for that one.

So into Bedale and we sat here for second breakfast. Its a lovely old traditional market town with cobbled areas.

Bedale church
Market Cross Bedale

Then it was back home on small roads. Komoot did try to take us a shorter way to East Cowton but as it was another gravel track, DH had had enough of those types of roads for the day. So it was a slightly long way to Great Smeaton where I again made cheese toasties. While the weather is dry , most of the time, its still not too warm especially for July.

Barley and Wheat are ripening in the fields though.

Wheat
Barley

Here’s hoping for better weather next weekend.

This weeks total 190 miles and YTD 3554 miles.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 5, 2020

Welcome July 2020

Well, there is another new month of this year. Do other people feel like me, that even though there hasn’t been much we would normally do, the year is flying past.

I have been working on 3 days this week so didn’t get in as many miles as of late but still managed 111 miles during the week.

We have been along to Saltburn by the Sea and Redcar on one occasion. The waves were up but it didn’t bother these juvenile gulls. What really struck me, was that the whole line of them – about 7 – just sat and didn’t take flight as we approached and even stayed to have photos taken.

Juvenile Seagulls

On Friday, there was wind and rain so we didn’t bother riding and got some more mundane tasks accomplished but we were out again on Saturday.

We were watching the weather forecast and set out into the SW headwind riding up to Stokesley via the newly widened Tanton Bridge. They have made a good job of it so hopefully it wont be as scary for newer riders.

From Stokesley we rode up through Hutton Rudby and then along to cross over the A19 towards East Rounton. There was a chap sat on the kerb , surrounded by other cyclists and it looks like he has come off. I don’t know if the wind had caught him and blown him off. I didn’t see any blood but he looked shocked.

We carried on down through East Harsley and then when we got to the sign for West Harsley took the single track road with passing places. We have never ridden it before and we were riding through fields of barley and another crop I couldn’t identify. I did stop and ask a chap at his isolated home thinking he might be a farmer. He wasn’t and had no idea what it was . I also didn’t take a photo.

Ripening barley

I was surprised to see how far we had climbed up and there was a lovely run down.

looking west

From here, when we got to the main road we turned towards Brompton but did have to use the busy road into Northallerton.

It is only about a mile before the turning for Brompton and decided to then head for home.

So 111miles and YTD 3,364 miles.

rash

This is a rash i have developed on my leg just above the ankle. It doesn’t hurt or be irritating. I had a similar thing happen a few weeks ago. I have similar but much smaller on the other leg. Any ideas if I could have been bitten as I didn’t feel anything

Posted by: brendaintheboro | June 28, 2020

Noticing the Unexpected

This week had some extremely hot weather and tremendous thunderstorms on Saturday. I was also working the first 2 days of the week so only got a few miles in on those days. However, I had agreed to go with DH up to Jarrow and back. We were to make a brief visit to my brother , in his garden before returning home.

Unfortunately, I had agreed on the hottest day of the year but didn’t know it. When I agreed, I had use the Komoot app to work out a slightly shorter ride as his last time had been 102 miles and I knew that would be too much for me – even with my wonderful e-bike.

So we set off on out usual route north, past Hurworth Burn and up through Haswell and then picking up NCN1 again in South Hetton.

The path past the allotments is very ropey but then the old railway path isnt too bad , if a gravel track all the way down to Ryhope.

NCN1 just out of South Hetton

The wild flowers are out everywhere and so it was very pleasant if not hot even at 8.00am by the time we got here.

The route then takes you across to Sliksworth and then the Komoot app took us along to the Queen Alexandra bridge and we could see the new road bridge further upstream. Very nice it look too.

Spire Bridge Sunderland.

Once at my brother’s , refilling water bottles and then he took me along to see his wife’s allotment. He says its hers as all he does is water it and only them when pushed. He admits he’s no gardener but likes the results.

lovely produce

Then we rode back into South Shields and looked at the numbers on the beaches. It looked like the 1960’s when I used to patrol these beaches as a volunteer lifeguard.

The Groyne South Shields

We cycled up the coast to Souter Lighthouse

Souter Lighthouse

I remember the sound of the fog horn as the haar used to roll in when I was a chid. There were plenty of cyclists on the path.

I was glad to be on the coast as it was a bit cooler than further inland and can tell you after 85 miles i was really glad to be home.

We only had a short ride on a very hot Thurday and then it was off out again on Friday. This time , we took water bottles we had part filled and frozen. DH kept them in a pannier along with plenty of extra water for me. I always need to drink far more than him and have always been the same.

This time, we werent really too sure where we were off to. This isnt really what DH likes. He prefers to have a destination in mind and stick to the plan whereas I am much more improvisational which is often reflected in my textile work. He also isnt too keen on me stopping to take photos.

Swans and cygnets in Albert Park

So we set off towards the river and through Preston Park to Yarm. Again , we were out early so avoided too much heavy traffic as we rode up to Kirklevington and turned along Forest Lane. It was still hot but the cloud rolled in and the decision was made to ride up to Hornby and across to East Cowton. The village shop was open but sadly the pop up cafe is still closed. We rode through and then when we got to the main Darlington road we decided to ride it to Scorton as it was so quiet.

We passed a raw milk vending machine at a farm. They are common in the Netherlands

We stopped for 2nd breakfast on a small green area I hadn’t noticed before.

Then we decided to head to Moulton. We had a delightful surprise when we got there. The old bus shop turned book exchange, had cake and biscuits on sale. woohoo!! well you have to support the small village community efforts.

cakes and biscuits

While we were standing there DH started laughing. This is what set him off.

a blue plaque

From here it was on to Middleton Tyas and I saw this wonderful fence.

Carrying on we crossed the bridge at Croft and along through Hurworth and Neasham to Middleton St George. We followed NCN14 and were again surprised to meet a man on a petrol driven vintage bicycle. This was not the same on we saw last year but rather a British made Cyclemaster. The owner is a collector and restorer and has it insured along with his other bikes so it is road legal.

The petrol tank and motor in the back wheel
licence plate

Then once along into Elton , we stopped for lunch outside the church and had a chat with a couple who were cycling but wont go on the more main roads.

Our water bottle ice was still partially frozen so it was really effective.

frozen before leaving home.

So Saturday , we knew was going to be unsettled so an early morning ride and home for breakfast. As the day progressed , the thunderstorms began so we were glad we weren’t out in it.

So this week 203 miles YTD 3253miles

Next week I wont be out so much as people are gaining more confidence in asking me to see to their feet , so I will just have to see how much I can do.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | June 21, 2020

Did It – woohoo!

This post is likely to be picture heavy sorry if you have slow wifi.

We got a couple of short rides in during the earl part of the week while I was working and then managed some longer rides. I will show you a some photos of where we went.

Artesian well

This was a find in Helperby Brafferton and was constructed to celebrate queen Victoria’s 60th anniversary. I asked if it was working but it isnt although they are hoping to restore it.

I loved the what appears to be a leas pineapple roof.

pineapple roof
Tap and basin

Travelling onwards we were delighted to find that the Scarborough bridge that was a bridge with steps in previous years has been replaced by a proper cycle bridge with a great ramp on both sides. Everyone using it was keeping left for social distancing.

Scarborough Bridge

This is on NCN65 and just upstream of Lendal Bridge where we would usually have to cross the river Ouse. This new crossing is so much better as it is a safer straight ride along the river.

The weather was kind to us although starting out as a misty moisty morning when cloudy was the weather, the sun came out.

Wednesday wasn’t such a good day with heavy rain. Andrew Sykes , author, of the CyclingEurope.org had his bike in being checked at CycleSense in Tadcaster. He agreed about the day being bad. However, we were cycling in a similar area as I wanted to see the Towton Battlefield site. DH wasn’t too thrilled but came along anyway.

We crossed what reminded me of the Netherlands of flat misty land.

misty moisty morning

As we continued westwards , the land began to rise and I could see why in 1461, this would have been a place where the armies of the Lancastrian and the Yorkists would class. The estimate is that 50,000 soldiers fought for hours in a snowstorm on the Palm Sunday of that Eastertime. The Yorkists won and so Edward 4th replaced Henry 6th.

Towton Battlefield Monument
remembrance crosses

I loved seeing these Palm Sunday crosses with the white rose of Yorkshire and the red rose of Lancaster lying together in remembrance of the thousands who died.

Now it was downhill to Saxton and stopping briefly at the church.

Saxton Church

In better weather this would have been a lovely place to rest on that bench in the church yard.

Onward to Sherburn in Elmet which is a large village. The Elmet refers to the ancient Celtic kingdom of the same name.

All Saints Church Sherburn in Elmet.

On the return journey we came across this cycle crossing of a rail line. I have never come across one made just for pedestrians and cyclists to use in this way.

cycle crossing with lifting barrier.

We carried on through Selby and finished for the day.

Thursday saw a beautiful dawn.

Dawn with mist rising

So it was another good long ride with a following wind.

So this week I cycled 214 miles resulting in 3050 miles for the half year.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | June 14, 2020

A Spring/Autumn Continues

Well, the weather here in the North East has continued to be cold for the time of the year and we have had lots of rain causing localised flooding and there has also been gale force winds.

I knew that Thursday and Friday wouldn’t be good days to get out cycling as DH had hospital appointments, so all rides have been short ones. So Monday we had two short rides, one in the morning and one in the afternoon when I finished work. There is still no activity at the barrage although the river has been high most of this week

Tuesday, was off early morning along the river and back through Stockton on Tees, the home of the safety match!!

Wednesday, I went out solo as it was raining and DH just didn’t feel like it. I did have an ulterior motive though as I bought some Showers Pass waterproof pants and wanted to try them. They were comfortable and didn’t slip down at the back. That’s a winner then On Thursday, before his hospital appointment, we had a morning ride and got back about 10.30am. Just as we got back the rain started and didn’t stop until Saturday afternoon.

There were areas that flooded and the wind blew a hoolie making it worse. On Saturday , we did get out and rode across through Cowpen Bewley and explored the village of Greatham just to get a few extra miles in.

We carried on to Seaton Carew but the fairing up of the weather had crowds out queuing for ice cream and fish and chips. We just carried on straight through as we are still avoiding crowds.

Coming back , I stopped and got some photos of seals hauled out on the creek. There was a haar ( what we call a very heavy sea fog) the nearer we were to the sea so you couldn’t actually see the sea.

Greatham Creek
Haar on the marsh

Seals
stick your toes in the air seal

So although I didn’t get any long rides in I still managed 106 miles this week and YTD 2836 miles. I would like to top the 3000miles by next weekend if possible. wish me luck.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | June 7, 2020

Who turned on Autumn?

Monday 1st June was a glorious day and we set off early to ride across to Bishop Auckland but went across to Newton Aycliffe and picked up the lovely cycle way to Shildon. This was a reverse of the route I used a couple of weeks ago. DH had also been out in May and had ridden through Durham which was our destination for the day.

We passed by the Locomotion museum still sadly closed because of Covid-19.

Then it was up through Coundon and South Church before going over the Newton Cap Viaduct to pick up the cycle way.

Its a very pleasant ride along the cycle way.

Once on the cycle way its impossible to see the Newton Cap Viaduct but the views across the countryside are very pretty

The path continues up and crosses the road in Willington and then there are plenty of benches so we stopped and had second breakfast here

We were following the route on Komoot and were surprised when it took us off the path before Brandon. Near Brancepeth the route put us on to A690 which was busy and so in future we will use the cycle path for a much greater distance.

As it was , I knew where we were and so could get onto local shared paths for a lot of the way through Meadowfield and Langley Moor until we got into Durham. We had a bit of confusion as it looks like you are going into an underground car park but this is actually the way towards the riverside. There is building work going on but we managed to get across the cycle bridge just downstream from the weir.

Durham Weir

We carried on and stayed on the road up towards Claypath and Gilesgate before getting out on the road to Sherburn where we had another stop to refuel.

We then climbed up Sherburn Hill and at Haswell Plough followed the road to Haswell and then down through Wingate and after Station town took the Path to Hurworth Burn which was busy with cyclists being such a lovely day. There were plenty of geese about too.

Over the years we have seen some of these cycling birdwatchers before and I mentioned that I had never seen one of them without a hat on!! It was warm though.

On towards home and we had ridden 64.5 miles.

I was working for 2 days this week so just had short morning rides but then Autumn arrived!! Its been cold and wet but we still have been out. These lockdown rides have seen us cycling in every direction so its getting harder to find different routes.

These poppies along the industrial area brighten the days.

I have been looking out for the cygnets and there are only 2 in the lake now so looks like number 3 has gone.

We did have another longish ride over to Cozy Coffee but of course that is still shut and I dont know when it will reopen due to the need for them to continue to shield.

Saturday , was a complete washout with rain and gales blowing all day so I spent time sewing. I will show that quilt when it goes to the baby its intended for.

So this week I rode 147 miles YTD 2730 miles.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | May 31, 2020

A Super Lockdown Week

Well the weather has been superb and I have got a lot of cycling in, 247 miles to be exact. woohoo!

Monday was a bank holiday and it was too good a day to waste. DH suggested a ride to Eppleby and we went over via Darlighton. The village shop was open for take outs so we bought a couple of scones which they kindly put jam on for us.

There was plenty of social distancing with cyclists who came in .

a free picnic table for 2nd breakfast
A lovely tribute wall at the Primary School

We took a long way home using an NCN route to Aldborough St John and then rode along to Croft with another lunch stop in Neasham. Most of the seats in this village have had the “don’t sit here tape’ removed.

Tuesday saw DH go off by himself as I was working all day but I did do an early morning short ride to add another 10 miles to the total and Wednesday was the same although slightly longer..

DH had been on about cycling to Boroughbridge and back. When I do it we usually camp and come back the next day but I was willing to give it a go. It would be my longest ride on this bike. In fact just a mile and a half short of my longest ride ever.

We used our usual route of across through Yarm, Kirkleatham and Appleton Wiske and along to Northallerton. When we left the house, the sun was shining brightly but it was a bit cool. We could see a bank of thick cloud ahead and by the time we were near Preston Park, I stopped to put on a buff to keep my ears warm and arm warmers too. Once in Yarm we were under dark cloud but it didn’t rain.

I find if I have eggs and banana for breakfast before setting off , i can do much better. So we actually didn’t stop until we got to Asenby 35 miles from home. I was ready for a break but the usual seat was occupied and the bus shelter now houses a book exchange. However, at the far end of the village there is another seat that was vacant. So we had second breakfast and the sun came out.

Then it was onward through Cundall and into Boroughbridge. The bakers we open and I queued to buy chocolate cake and teacakes for later in the day.

Weir on the river Ure
Boroughbridge Canal

We used to kayak through here when we canoe camped years ago. Its now has a lovely picnic area.

The return journey was almost the same way back but we stopped in South Otterington and had lunch near the church. By now the weather was hot, hot , hot.

St Andrews South Otterington

DH had to get under a tree in order to see his phone to restart his Komoot app as it was too bright.

checking his phone

Then it was off to home. We did have the wind on our backs most of the way home which was very pleasant. We did see these bales of hay which DH remarked looked like marshmallows.

Friday was again very hot and the three of us decided on a short ride to the coast. So Hartlepool it was.

The restoration work at Greatham Creek is going well as they try to return the natural habitat. They have also put in some interesting metal work.

Greatham Creek viewing point
Greatham Creek

Then it was along the road to Seaton Carew and the promenade to Hartlepool Marina
Maritime Museum

The ice cream shop in Seaton Carew was open when we got back there so we enjoyed a ice lolly each before returning home.

Saturday saw DH and I go off out again, this time again to the coast but at Saltburn and we stopped for 2nd breakfast near the Band Stand which was decked out with memories of WW2.

Band Stand
Victorian people wire sculpture

Then it was across to Four Lane Ends and Skelton Ellers before turning through Guisborough and along past Newton under Roseberry. They have opened the car park and they were packed out with people parking all along the road. Once in Great Ayton, we went along to the green and sat and had lunch. For the most part people were being sensible and keeping in family groups.

River Leven

The return journey was along to Stokesley and Hutton. We turned for Hilton and were lucky to see our friends climbing a style as they were out walking. So good to have this chance meeting.

So all in all , its been a super week. If you are only interested in cycling , then you can stop reading now .

I have been watching the swans nesting and finally 3 cygnets have emerged. Three eggs were left unattended and finally after 2 days another broke through but the parents were off with their three older babies.

It was the saddest thing to see this tiny fluffy trying to get out of the nest. I don’t think it will survive.

Cygnets
charity quilt
Free Machine Quilting

So miles ridden this week are 247 miles and YTD 2583 miles

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