Club Run to Bircham on 18/6/2022.

Q. What’s the difference between Friday and Saturday? A. 17 degrees Celsius. This was a remarkable meteorological change in 24 hours.

Four left PC to pick up one more at Kelling Hangs. The bunch of five rode conventionally west over the heaths and up the Downs through to Binham, Wighton and Crabbe Castle. It was then into the less visited territory further west, via the long descent into the Burn valley at North Creake, the long climb over the Shammer Beacon to Stanhoe, before dipping south past Barwick and Hyde Park to the final fast stretch to Bircham windmill cafe. After a few morning spatters, the real rain started on the approach to the mill and this persisted through the refuelling break. The bunch set off on the return leg fairly briskly to generate some warmth in a strengthening north wind and light rain, riding by way of Bagthorpe, Frizzleton, Syderstone, Blenheim Park, South Creake, Waterden, North Barsham, Houghton St Giles ford, the stiff Canister Hall climb over to Great Snoring, Thurning and Gunthorpe to Brinton (from where Jim turned for home), before the familiar villages route back to Bodham Hill and Red Barn Lane. From Syderstone Common over to South Creake and Waterden, the bunch coincided with the band of heavy rain that had been forecast for the area, turning some of the lanes into streams. From North Barsham back it was intermittent light showers. – (Back in the north east of the county, there was barely 1mm in the rain gauge.)

Group: Mark; Jim; Harvey; Chris S; Brian.

Distances: 56 miles to 81 miles.

One puncture: – rear Continental GP 5000, with three inexplicable spaced out cuts.

Six buzzards; weasel with prey; roe deer with two very small fawns; red deer; young tawny owl.

Meanwhile, back in Shannocktown, Neil S had suffered an early morning blowout and a consequent visit to Black Bikes for a replacement tyre and tube. He later rode to Great Snoring to try to intercept the run, but arrived too early, obviously unable to anticipate the puncture repairs being carried out south of Syderstone.