I thought it was going to be a big group today when 17 people signed up on the Facebook club page, but I wasn't expecting 28 to turn up at the Twelfth man.
Luckily a couple of others had the route downloaded on their Garmin's so we split up into more manageable groups.
All was going well until the first puncture of the day! This was only 15 miles in, as we arrived at the Boat in Ellesmere Port where we were meeting Darren and Julia who joined us for the ride to Delamere, and then kept on to Beeston.
All the groups came together whilst waiting for the puncture to be fixed, and then we headed off down the oil sites road and on to Elton.
I hadn't noticed that Degs was missing when we stopped, and as we were heading up the Oil sites road I noticed a light in the distance behind us so I eased up and recognised it was Degs! When he caught us up he explained his tyre had split, and because he was close to home he had gone back and changed his bike (almost pro all he needs is a team car to carry his bikes now!) What made me laugh though was that as he didn't have the route on his Garmin, he had been following our tyre tracks on the wet road. I couldn't resist the temptation, and now Degs will be known forever in the club as Tonto!!!!!!
The group regrouped again at the top of Primrose Lane, a good leg stretching climb, and headed off the the Station Cafe at Delamere.
I think the staff at the cafe were a little shocked to see so many cyclists, but the weather was great so some of the group sat outside to alleviate the overpowering lycra!
A group of faster riders, and eaters/drinkers headed off before the rest of the group, which left 23 of us.
|Fast Fish heading off.|
|The Sunday Shoal|
All was going well even the climb up and over Tirley Lane until on the descent Francesca got a puncture. Not normally an issue, except this time we were on a 10% hill!!! Once fixed we carried on to the main Tarporley road and then the real problem began. We turned into a no through road, which turned into a farm track, which took us to a path we have followed before!!!
I think I said last time we rode this (check out my previous BLOG post) I would always check the routes for the suitableness for road bikes. Well I failed again!! This time it was worse, it was muddy and very wet! It was almost impossible to keep upright, especially on the cobble bridges. Luckily everyone saw the funny side and didn't look to annoyed with my navigation fail!!
|Easy does it!|
|I'm not sure what happened to Ken!!!|
|Chris, on the cyclocross bike!|
|Alan Still smiling|
The only casualty of the muddy cobbled path was Chris, who got a puncture. He was laughing saying he was enjoying the muddy path as he was on his Cyclocross bike and it was made for conditions just like these!! (spoke too soon I think!)
At the end of the path, conveniently there was a stream that was very useful in cleaning off the mud from the bike.
The rest of the ride seemed very uneventful after this, and we carried on towards Chester, then round the back of the Zoo (Thanks Dave for the suggestion) and then back to the Wirral via Deeside and the marsh path to Burton.
When we got to Nets Cafe, a few of the riders decided to stop for a refuel, but I had to carry on as I was already running later than planned.
Alan suffered the last puncture of the day as we rode through Heswall, and Kev suffered a broken chain as he rode home, luckily he had a spare link (must get one for my tool kit!)
The weather was great today, almost like summer at a balmy 5 degrees!! It was probably not the best day to test ride my new neoprene gloves as they were a little on the toasty side, and my fingers looked like I had been in a bath too long when I got home!
The weird thing about today's ride was when I posted the route and ride on the club facebook page I added a photo. It wasn't until I was checking out when we last rode Platts lane that I realised the photo was taken on the day we rode the bumpy route last year!
So another good ride in the bag in the work up to the Wild Wales challenge, just need to keep it up!!
The diet seems to be going ok, although it is tough trying to be good all the time! I did avoid the cake today, and only had toast with my coffee. Training at JGF Fitness on Wednesday night was great, even the Mini Palefishers took part!!!
I lost a couple more pounds this week and have now lost 10lb in total. Hide the Salad please, I'm starving!!!!