The way out by John D
So, 10 riders arrived at Pretty Corner for JD’s ride to Cawston on a day which was typical of the season of unreliable weather forecasts. There were several shorts on show, a few warm layers, JD prepared for rain and Robert dressed for the beach! In the event the weather proved kind, although the moderate and somewhat chilly north-westerly made its presence felt.
Having been pre-warned that we would be meeting Malcolm and Dave C later en-route we left captain-less and headed through Gresham and Sustead to Hanworth. Here the widely spaced cattle-grid on the northern approach rattled several of the men’s teeth and dislodged Stephen’s rear light. There must be a case for re-orienting these grids by 90 degrees so the cyclist can pick a single bar to ride over – well perhaps not!
It was then briefly on to the A140 before taking White Post Road to skirt south of Gunton Park to Suzie’s vegetable stall where we found David and Malcolm browsing the produce. We missed the 11am meeting time by 10 minutes but even so had covered the 10 miles from PC in just under 40 minutes.
It was then a southerly direction on Long Lane until turning off to Colby and the now obligatory couple of hundred yards on the Trans-Norfolk Highway (aka B1145). It was then the lane towards Tuttington, and shortly after crossing the now-dismantled Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway line (Aylsham to North Walsham) the first puncture of the day – a pesky flint taking out Alan. Soon on our way we headed for Oxnead Mill and across the A140 again.
It was here that the second mechanical of the day occurred when Dave C’s chain parted. Luckily he was carrying the appropriate amount of used fivers to pay for a spare fixed link and the appropriate tool that Trevor E was carrying. Judging that fixing this problem was quite technical and could be unpleasant to watch, the main bunch headed onwards leaving Kevin ‘he’s a practical bloke – good with a truncheon’ and Alan to effect repairs and make their way to a late lunch.
The bunch made Cawston via Buxton Heath and Haveringland for lunch by 12:50 after 26.5 miles from PC. Space was limited at All Things Nice due to the presence of another bunch of riders, but service and food was of the usual high standard. An hour later there was a three way split, with JD heading east for an early bath and the Sheringham and Cley/Wells/Lt Walsingham contingents heading into the breeze and for the coast.
Thanks guys for being easily led!
The way back by Malcolm
Well, just 8 Wheelers began the journey “home” along well worn tracks towards Oulton Street and then the junction with the Blickling Road. Kevin now became the second rider of the day to suffer the fate of the Norfolk flint but the tube was replaced in a flash and we were on our way again (or so we thought!) only for Kevin to puncture a second time. Unaware of this, four riders had cycled on to the right turn to Itteringham and down to the bridge expecting the other group of four to follow. We waited but there was no sign, so Malcolm volunteered to cycle back up the hill leaving 3 to continue on to PC. By the time he reached the group they were back on the road and all 5 pedalled incident free up to the Little Barningham junction where Malcolm headed off to Erpingham and home and the others the few miles back to PC,
Alan, Andrew, David, Geoff, Graham, John D, John S, Kevin, Malcolm, Robert, Stephen, Trevor E and CJ (who met us at All Things Nice)
40 miles PC to PC
Many thanks to John D for leading us along the excellent route from PC to our lunch stop.