Beaumont ( yes, Beaumont) to Sedbergh on Sunday 5 May.
Taking the policy of splitting into groups of 8 or less for traffic safety reasons to a new level, Nick decided to form a second group before arriving at the Beaumont start and started his ride from Millennium Bridge. The rest of us, those who had read the rides diary, set off from Beaumont having welcomed Maz and Graeme to their first CTC Sunday ride. We took the Halton road and turned up Kellet Lane passing through Nether Kellet, Over Kellet and Capernwray, where Mike took a comfort break, promising to catch up. We waited in Borwick, but Mike didn’t catch up, so thinking he had taken a different route we carried on. The weather, although cloudy, remained dry and cold, ideal for cycling through the quiet, welcoming countryside and good progress was made through Holme, Ackenthwaite and onto our destination of Sizergh Castle. It was there that we discovered Nick, who, somehow, had arrived before us, and re-discovered Mike who had somehow managed to join the ‘Millennium Bridge’ group. We had arrived at Sizergh Castle marginally before the Bank Holiday queue so we were able to enjoy our coffee break in comfort without having to wait to be served.
The 2 groups now combined for the second leg of the journey having lost only one rider to the ‘pull’ of home and the dreaded gardening duties. We took the road through Sedgwick and followed the delightful Halfpenny loop before joining the Gatebeck road, where we turned left towards Old Hutton. As we climbed, the wonderful countryside opened up before us, and the views were extensive. Riding through Killington village, we encountered the first, and only, mechanical of the day in the form of a puncture for Maz.
When we arrived at the main road we turned right and went back across the river to take the narrow lane across to join the Sedbergh to Kirkby road. It was along this lane that the Bluebells were at their most dazzling, lining both sides of the lane as we rode along. We followed the road into Sedbergh and began to explore the lunch possibilities. Half the group carried sandwiches so didn’t need to join the lunch option seekers. Unfortunately, the first cafe was full, the second closed, so into the pub it was! The Bull in the High Street turned out to be an excellent choice and we sat in extremely pleasant surroundings whilst the very friendly staff took our orders. We were presented with our excellent food pretty quickly, but having spent time hunting for our venue, the sandwich brigade were beginning to feel the cold.
Having said good bye to Maz and Graeme who had a previously arranged party to attend we set off back down The Kirkby Lonsdale road, taking the track into Barbon, where Nick decided to take his group (Nick) a flatter way home. We climbed out of Barbon onto the old Roman road and followed it to the end. Passing through Tunstall we took the turn at Wrayton, taking us to Wennington and Wray. We continued on our way towards home, the group now fragmenting as we neared our own homes.
An excellent days cycling in good company with lots of interesting climbs and wonderful views to go with them. 67 miles 4700ft of ascent in extremely suitable cycling weather.
P.S. The fragmentation of the group on the A683 allowed those with legs to go up the series of bumps through and beyond Brookhouse, while those wanting a more level bimble went along the cycle path to rejoin the Nick group. This group of three finally dispersed as we went arrived at Lancaster.