Saturday 13th May 2017
It turned out the shepherd for the B1's had gone off to find greener pastures and abandoned his flock. This good shepherd had to combine the two rides. It became apparent after the first climb that this was going to be a problem. The difference in abilities between the slower and faster riders was too great. Nobody was going to enjoy the ride. The slowest three riders had the route and were happy to carry on with Shane Blackmore guiding. Thanks Shane.
The now B1 group made good speed through Cartmel and climbed quickly up Bigland Hill and down to Haverthwaite. The bluebells this year in the Rusland Valley Woodlands are stunning. There were two more tough climbs before the café stop at Hawkshead were I made the mistake of going to the Hawkshead Café. No eggs as they are on the breakfast menu which finishes at 11.30! Sooner than we thought, the B2's arrived. A quick chat with them and we set off for the tough climb of Hawkshead Hill. No time to work off the café legs!
Somewhere on the way down from Hawkshead Hill we lost Sec. It is always a worry after a long descent if one of the party is missing at the bottom. We flagged down a car who assured us they had passed no cyclists on the road and we assumed, correctly, that he had taken the turning back to Hawkshead part way down. We carried on through Low and High Wray and re-joined the Hawkshead Ferry road. At the top of the climb in Far Sawrey we came across the B2's sorting out a minor mechanical. They had decided to miss out Hawkshead Hill and head straight to the ferry. They had also seen Sec who was now ahead of us. We made a small loop which brought us around to the ferry where we were waved straight on to join Sec already aboard.
The section of this ride from the ferry back to the cars is one of my all time favourites. It undulates along quiet lanes down the Winster Valley to Bowland Bridge, through Pool Bank past Witherslack Hall, Witherslack and back to the cars at Mill Side.
A great ride in great company!