Sunday Ride to Finchingfield – 22 December 2013

A bright but rather windy day attracted 5 riders to the start at the Town Hall for a ride led by Dave R.  The wind helped us to Andrewsfield airfield for elevenses where we were joined by Beryl, John and Margaret bringing our total to 8.  No take-offs to entertain us due to high crosswinds on the runway but the same wind blew us on to Lunch at Finchingfield.

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Five remaining riders leaving The Red Lion PH in Finchingfield (Click on photo to enlarge)

We decided to head straight back for Chelmsford and skip a tea stop, but the increasing wind made it quite hard work at times. An enjoyable 50 mile ride though.

Click here to see my Strava Record of the ride:

http://www.strava.com/activities/101408217

Martin Cockersole

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Ride Report 8 December

I’ll start with an apology – elevenses was at the “Shed” Sawbridgeworth and not as I posted in the rides list “The Hut” – a case of getting my wooden outhouses mixed up with my shacks…

 

Six of us set out on as good a day as you get this time of the year, facing a decidedly cool westerly breeze for the first leg, which was thankfully a mere shadow of the storm winds of the preceding week. Taking a pretty route, we arrived at the Shed with 23 miles clocked, running a little late. I must put in a word here for the “Santa Sandwich,” a speciality du maison of “The Shed”. This consists of hot turkey, stuffing, sausage, bacon and cranberry sauce in a “Toastie”. You get a small salad too, but it would really only take a few sprouts and some gravy to make it into a full lunch. A snip at £4! John and Margaret joined us so that made eight to go forward to lunch, taking in the very scenic and colourful track through Hatfield Forest during the best of the day’s sunlight.

 

Its strange to reflect sometimes how life throws up little ironies: The Cock at HBO was “fully booked” so we had to try the Dukes Head, where once again there was “no room at the inn”. Very appropriate so near to Christmas, and ironically caused by that event itself. We backtracked to Hatfield Heath, safe in the knowledge that failing all else we could eat at the Post Office. As it turned out, we got good service, sandwiches, chips and soup at the White Horse (“The Stag” being closed down).

 

The golden afternoon faded to dusk as the group approached Writtle and lights were deployed with just a few miles left complete the day.

ChelmsfordCity CTC Sunday Ride to Great Bardfield. 1st December 2013

A joint report from Phil and me this week!

Phil’s bit first:

Having missed the Essex MG AGM a couple of weeks ago, and seen Martin’s pictures in last week’s ride report, I approached the 4 or 5 riders assembled at Fairfield Road wondering whether a decision had been taken I didn’t know about. All riders were wearing various shades and styles of ‘maillots jaunes’ again. Coincidence, and the need to be very visible on typically murky winter mornings, seemed to be the explanation. Another 6 riders arrived for our 9.15am start, not all of them wearing yellow, but we had all ‘layered up’; it was a chilly start.

Brian and Jeanette on the tandem led us through Great Waltham and Littley Green towards the Station Cafe at Rayne. On narrow lanes, even when we’re in single file, so often do vehicles become impatient when waiting for a safe straight section of road to overtake that it hardly registers. How refreshing then, when we were followed at some distance, for some distance, without feeling that sense of frustration from behind. When this car did overtake (safely) the fact that there was a bike on a bike rack on the tailgate explained a lot.

We made Rayne in good time. The train (or rather carriage) was in the station and we understand Santa Claus himself will be preparing for his busiest time of year by having a relax in second class later in the month. Numbers remained buoyant for the onward journey to Great Bardfield even though three of us took the return back to Chelmsford.

This is Phil’s endomodo record of the ride to Rayne:

http://www.endomondo.com/workouts/273645350/7755891

Now my bit:

After elevenses on the cold platform outside the café at Rayne station we set off for Great Bardfield. John and Beryl had joined us so we were still a group of 11. Brian led us via Shalford on a very enjoyable route to The Bell for lunch where our numbers were further boosted by the arrival of Eric and Heather, meaning we had 15 members out today, including a very welcome visitor Mel from the SE Essex MG.

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Some of our group having lunch at The Bell Great Bardfiled

As we left for the return to Chelmsford the sun burst out and we had perfect conditions for our ride home. Brian chose another excellent route via Lubberhouses Lane, Shalford, Felsted, North End and the Chignals and we reached Chelmsford at about 3.15 having covered about 50 miles.

Here is a link to my Strava record of the complete ride:

http://www.strava.com/activities/98064329

Martin