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Sociable leisure rides for enthusiastic cyclists

Ride Reports

21SundayAPRIL

The Lost Village of Imber

 104 km  966 m  04:31  x6  x19
Ride Category
A glorious Easter Sunday which seemed to have meant everybody had gone to the seaside as the roads were almost completely deserted all the way around this ride!

We meandered leisurely past the white horse at Alton Barnes as there was no rush to get to Imber as it didn't open until 11am. More lanes to West Lavington and then the climb up The Warren before turning off at Gore Cross to begin the ride across the Imber Ranges.

The Ranges are an interesting place, totally deserted, almost totally silent, no habitations, pylons or anything else to be seen for miles around. And then you see Imber Church nestled in a small valley ahead totally isolated in the middle of nowhere.

We arrived at the church at bang on 11am and explored the church and some had refreshments. We then ambled through the rest of the village taking in the apocalyptic street scenes used for urban combat practice.

The road across the Ranges towards Warminster is a scene of desolation, scrubland littered with the wrecks of tanks, an astonishing place and well worth visiting on the few days a year you are allowed to cross.

From Warminster we joined the Wylye Valley to Boyton where we had lunch (or late breakfast) at the Ginger Piggery, a lovely spot for a break. The rest of the Talbot family joined us for lunch before they went on to visit Imber.

More quiet lanes followed until we eventually got to Amesbury which was a bit busier, Paul was taken by surprise by a car bowling down the old road now used as a cycle route. Nearly needed a clean chamois!

The road north is pretty undulating and it was quite hot in the Sun so the pace dropped a little but it didn't take too long before we were back in Pewsey to find the shop had sold out of ice creams (doh)

Great ride, great company. Thanks for coming along :)

17WednesdayAPRIL

Wednesday Evening Ride

 28 km  185 m  01:15  x7
Ride Category
7 riders assembled for an evening ride out to Kingston Lisle, including a new rider Paul Bentley.

The sun was shining and some legs were on view as we set off down Church Street but then we had to wait for the road work lights at Ham Road, then down to the Letcombes and up Holburn Hill where Nick S waited for me to catchup as my usual position is at the back of the peleton, but unfortunately I'd already got up the hill and was waiting for him at the junction of the B4001 (doh) we eventually met up and continued. Through Chilton and Sparshot to Kingston Lisle the peleton kept up a good pace then flew down the hill to Baulking, then followed the normal route back to Wantage and a pint (or 2) at the Pub just on sunset.

A lovely sunny evening for ride lets hope we get plenty more.
14SundayAPRIL

The Harlequin Hack

 110 km  788 m  05:00  x12
Ride Category
Eleven Corallian members completed the event today. Ken, unfortunately, double punctured and had to DNF before the finish. There were about 90 finishers, to be confirmed once I've gone through the results.

A bright but cold start which quickly clouded over with an easterly breeze. Most finishers looked quite chilly!!

Thanks to Nick, June, Tracey, Jasmine, Sue, Hugo, Chris, Chris and Katherine for all your help today.

A few comments from riders...

"Thanks everybody for yesterday's great ride. Super quiet route. And thanks again for the catering!"

"Thank you for holding enjoyable BP. I really enjoyed my first Audax event in UK. The course was well set up and enjoyed beautiful sceneries very much. I like to thank you to all of your club members who supported the event. I could see there were so much of hospitality everywhere."
10WednesdayAPRIL

Wednesday Evening Ride

 30 km  97 m  01:12  x7
Ride Category
Lovely evening! There was a slightly nagging northerly wind which made it harder going on the outward leg than most people wanted, but good disciplined riding minimised the drag.

We did a quick saddle adjustment for Chris's drooping nose just before Southmoor and then enjoyed the tailwind and smooth tarmac homewards. Jon, Jarv, and Louis peeled off at various points, so the pub posse was just the 4 remnants, enjoying a chilled "warm down".

7SundayAPRIL

Pang Valley - Source to Thames

 91 km  1060 m  04:10  x6  x1
Ride Category
With hindsight probably more Red than Blue, particularly at this early stage of the season, and the morning's 61 km seemed quite tough!

It was chilly grey start as five riders set out from Wantage including Pete on his new steed, picking up Chris at the top of Chain Hill. Inevitably, given the terrain, the peloton was widely spread until Hampstead Norreys, where we failed (first of several times) to gaze into the clear waters of the R Pang. Decent discipline was then maintained until lunch at Hermitage where Hilliers GC Café had largely been taken over by cyclists. Pete felt that his new bike should not have to be left outside with all the others so locked it up inside the store - surprisingly there were no complaints.

After lunch a little brightness broke through the grey skies and we made rapid progress back over the downs to Brightwalton where Chris left us. We arrived back in Wantage about 1415.

Thanks to everyone for a very enjoyable, friendly ride - with a few fond memories of Lyn in our minds.
3WednesdayAPRIL

Wednesday Evening Ride

 28 km  162 m  01:06  x5
Ride Category
Five riders braved the cold for the first "summer" ride of the season. We managed to avoid all the showers too which was a bonus, judging by the size of the puddles on the drive home we dodged a bullet!

No incidents, plenty of chat and a nice spin around the Vale. We finished three minutes before sunset and topped it all off with a pint in the KAH (beer)

31SundayMARCH

Mother's Day - Morning Ride

 71 km  259 m  03:00  x5
Ride Category
Not as warm as yesterday, but still quite pleasant, once we got going. It was nice to catch up with riders I'd not seen in a while, and to meet Steve, and we enjoyed a gently helping tailwind on the route out. 5 is a really nice sociable number, so there was plenty of nattering.

The headwind did't make itself felt until the Thrupp turning - exposed and straight roads don't help! From there on, it felt like a struggle at times, but we all made light work of the last hour or so and arrived back in Wantage pleased to have been out.

24SundayMARCH

Welcome Ride

 52 km  293 m  02:08  x11
Ride Category
A beautiful spring day with blue skies, light winds and although not especially warm to start with it certainly wasn't cold and some bare legs were in evidence!

Welcome to Steve on his first ride with the club who joined 9 others at King Alfred and we picked up Richard in Ginge.

Progress was smooth out to Blewbury where we could sit outside at Style Acre and enjoy a break before heading back. A bit of a headwind across the Steventon wastelands before a pleasant meander around the Hanneys with the hedgerows just coming into leaf.

It was a ride of village pairs starting with H!! Hendreds, Hagbournes and Hanneys and very pleasant it was too. We got back to Wantage just as the church clock was chiming midday :)

20WednesdayMARCH

Winter Evening Ride

 48 km  141 m  01:50  x5
Ride Category
Lovely end to the Winter season - no wind, dry, mild - ideal. A very sociable group rode tightly and with decent pace to zip around the Vale on the same route as 2 weeks ago.

Big thanks to all that have supported this Winter Night Rides season, and especially the ride leaders who have volunteered!