Sunday, November 30, 2014

This Sunday's ride................

Another change to the published lunch venue.
Now "Chobham Castle" NOT The Four Horseshoes,Burrowhill.

Emirates Ride

The view from the Emirates cable car yesterday.
Graham's ride will (hopefully) afford similar views on 1st February 2015.

Sunday, 30 November

 Reigate - Dormansland - Fanny's Farm Shop

 All together

Dave's pictures

Sunday 30th November 2014

When I set off from home it was a very foggy day but this had largely cleared when I arrived at Morrisons in Reigate for the meet and it eventually became a pleasant day for this time of year.
We were aiming for a prompt start to make sure we arrived at our lunch stop in time for the bar menu which they could offer us if we were there by about 12.30.  Ian set off by himself a bit earlier saying he would meet us there. The other riders left without too much delay - 11 of us headed out at about 11.15.
We left Morrisons and turned south along Bell Street then left along Lesbourne Road towards Redhill, passing the Cafe du VĂ©lo on route.
Continuing westwards towards Merstham I discovered that roadworks had popped up blocking our planned bypass through the Watercolours estate so we carried on to Merstham before turning towards Nutfield. Jeff warned of a hillock ahead. This was Church Hill and sure enough the road rose and continued rising until we reached the A25 at Nutfield.
We stayed on this road until just after Bletchingly where we joined Rabies Heath Road - another incline but this time milder. A brief uphill to the top of Tilburstow and down the other side where we turned along Hart's Lane and the route flattened out. We crossed the A22 and rode through Crowhurst and Lingfield reaching the Old House at Home just a few minutes after our scheduled time of 12.30.
Neil decided he had to do Daniel's role so he had the roast but could only manage one pint. Most others chose from our cyclists only bar menu.
Some time after we had ordered, Ian arrived having had a navigational mishap at Lingfield but was allowed to order from our special menu.
After lunch Ed and Ian set off by themselves leaving 10 of us to head west in the group.  We rode together past Lingfield to Newchapel then northwest along Bones Lane.  We turned left towards Smallfield Road at the end of the lane and shortly after said goodbye to those heading towards Horley as 5 of us turned north towards Outwood and Fannies Farm.
This brought us fairly promptly to Horne Court Hill which although a little steep was fairly short. We had a short break by Outwood Mill which has recently been restored before continuing towards Nutfield via Coopers Hill. Then straight over to Church Hill - much easier in this direction - and into Merstham. Here we split temporarily with Mike and Jeff braving the slopes of Rocky lane leaving Sue, Andy, Neil and me to climb the gentle slope on the main road through the village. No escaping the last climb to Fannies Farm though.
We all met at the farm where Neil, Jeff and Mike headed home.
There were three left for tea, Andy, Sue and me. Ian arrived a bit later.
I left with Sue to guide her to Coulsdon arriving home about 4.30, probably one of the shortest returns from tea I've had. Mileage about 45.

From Dave S 

Apologies for the beats getting out of the chair!

Monday, November 24, 2014

This Sunday's ride...............

Your leader has informed me of a change to the destination.
It will now be The Old House at Home, Dormansland.
Please arrive at Morrisons ,Reigate promptly so to enable a 12.30pm arrival for lunch.

To quote Dave "The Old House at Home said they do only roasts on a Sunday as well but said they could do baguettes and sandwiches if we get there by 12:30 so it's just as well it is a shorter ride so  we leave Morrisons promptly and no stragglers.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sunday 23 November

Having seen the forecast and waking to the sound of rain I didn't expect to see many at Tillings. After refreshments Dave and I set off for an abbreviated ride to The Parrot at Forest Green via Abinger Hammer and Holmbury St Mary.

There were plenty of autumn leaves to admire - most of them were on the road, floating in the torrents which at times covered the road. Lunch was soon served at The Parrot - there were few customers at just past noon. After drying out (a little) but noting the rain hadn't stopped, we decided to venture forth and head for home. Unfortunately  this meant missing out on the last of the Capel cakes for this year - we didn't want to wait around for over an hour to 'opening time'.

We parted company at the top of Newdigate hill. I was looking forward to descending Henfold Lane but at the top I could see the road and entrance to the lake was flooded, as was the road a few yards further on, so a cautious descent was necessary. I arrived home at 14.30ish with less than 30 on my computer.


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Sunday 16th November 2014

Someone has a sense of humour :-) it.

This Sunday (23rd) your leader has informed me of a change..................The Bull at Ewhurst is the preferred destination.

Radio 2 lunchtime presenter Jeremy Vine rides to the BBC from his home in Chiswick every day, and wears a helmet cam.................this is what happened today:

Sunday 16 November 2014

High Elms - Westerham - (Woldingham)

On riding towards Sutton, the sun was breaking through but waiting at Carshalton Ponds, the  gathering mist portended gloom.  Still, as the ride through splendid autumnal trees proved, this was a late autumn ride.  The meeting at Carshalton was the occasion for two anniversaries: for Neil's first ride earlier this year and apparently Jeff's first encounter with your correspondent (well-remembered).  We were also glad to welcome Lilian after her long beginners Saturday ride through Woolwich.

Taking the direct route on the A232, seven rode over the Croydon flyover, presenting a few highlights: crossing the tram tracks at Addiscombe Road, the art deco of Shirley Library and West Wickham Public Conveniences.

Andy passed us as on Jackass Lane (via Kingsway from Coney Hall) -- the backward glance not revealing The Shard on the horizon.  A brief stop at the top of Shire Lane indicated a broken front brake cable for Neil.  At High Elms elevenses, he explained its 19-year vintage and subsequently mended it, so our concerns about a forthcoming one-brake descent of Hogtrough Hill were alleviated.  With only 8.5 miles to lunch and an ascent to Downe and the 25% of Church Hill, Jeff demonstrated his superior climbing technique to avoid spectacular wheelies to Cudham.  The descent towards Brasted, with good views despite low cloud, separated us from lunch but whither did Force Green Lane disappear?
Keith triumphant over Church Hill
Arriving at The General Wolfe (Westerham born; died leading the Battle of Quebec, 1759) at 1220 the hearty soup was more solid than liquid.  Departing at 1320, with the slippery decking gingerly negotiated, an ascent of Clacket Lane preceded another mystery: all but one preferred not to climb White Hill when pausing at the fine westward view of the bluff of Titsey Hill.  One wonders why.
A rapid descent of The Ridge left us passing Knight's at Woldingham at 1415 and all opting for an early return home, apparently by different routes.  For one, Burntwood Lane (pain) via Coulsdon Common offered the descent of Marlpit Lane (gain) at 41+mph and a return via Banstead High Street.  A return home at 1515 was welcome after merely 46 miles as steady rain started before 4pm.  Many thanks to my variously impressive companions.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Sunday 9th November 2014

A rare visit from Brian G

Well the leader's ready

Wikipedia link not required today

Whitehill Lane just north of the M25...........FNRttC??

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Sunday, 9th November

Norwood Hill - Smallfield - Fanny's Farm Shop 

A select sextet was drawn by the magnetic pull of  a 9.15 am start at Ryka's. The polarity was not quite strong enough for all; Janice docked via the West Humble underpass, while others followed a quite different, magnetic field to Norwood Hill. With elevenses less than a 6 mile crow's flight away, the leader assumed a generous licence to meander. Our serpentine route took us via Punchbowl Lane to the still glowing embers of the Brockham bonfire, where we adopted a lonesome Mike Morley warming his spirits, then down to Parkgate, where an independent-minded Angie broke loose and did her own meander, before rejoining us aglow at the Fox Revived.

Here our numbers swelled, many eager to experience the flavour of a new for us mid-morning venue. Andy produced vouchers for a Revival Breakfast, with time in hand to explore the menu. The response I think was positive, though a forgotten wallet left me salivating like a hungry hyena at the sight of Terry's generous bacon sandwich. A kindly angel slipped a groat into my pocket.

After a pretty relaxed stay, we rose; some to return home, some dirty dozen game to meander further, the promised 6 mile pancake-flat promenade to lunch now tripled. With Smallfield due east of Norwood Hill, we headed south through Charlwood and Ifield to skirt the perimeter of Gatwick Airport. Here, Neil discovered the limits of his Poundland light set and Geoffrey, rather cheated by the lack of altitude and effort, keeled off to visit the Evans' Cycling Treasure Chest to find some woolies to keep him warm. The undaunted others pressed on via Shipley Bridge, Copthorne, Turner's Hill and Rowfant to rediscover magnetic north and coast effortlessly down Turner's Hill Road to find Mill Lane. Here we were overwhelmed by the Proustian waft of school dinners, drifting evocatively from Copthorne Prep School, to take us back to early memories of boiled swede and turnip. Do you remember? Effingham and Downlands Lanes took us to Plough Lane and our target of  Smallfield's Plough and Furrow.

 Despite the season we dined, (well, most of us),  in bright sunshine beneath an almost cloudless sky. The P and F is a welcoming and cycle-friendly pub, warmly to be recommended. We left, with the sun still quite high in the sky, to head due north towards Bletchingley (not Redhill as promised in the programme). Ken soon struck off towards Redhill, as did Paula and Andy and Terry at the A25. The dwindling rump pressed on for an early tea at Fanny's. We lingered over tea and cakes; Fanny conscripted Paul for potato hauling duties, for which he was rewarded with an apple. What more might he ask?

With the sun now sinking and the temperature dropping, we headed home, our cycling having been enhanced by an almost perfect sunny November Sunday, which I hope was thoroughly enjoyed by all.


Thursday, November 06, 2014

The Fox Revived

Any folk intending to be out for Jeff's ride to this new 11's maybe interested in this voucher for "The Revival Breakfast".............five items for £5.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Sunday 2nd November 2014

Your photographer was puzzled by the bell

We were keen to leave before nightfall

Grateful thanks to Sally & Terry

Monday, November 03, 2014

Remember, remember the 2nd November

  Parkway Tea Rooms
Photo report from our special correspondent

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Sunday November 2 2014

With the skies looking worse by the minute, I left hurriedly around nine after a late stowing of waterproofs (well that's what they claim to be). As I headed towards Surbiton, it occurred to me that I should have been going to Kingston Bridge where someone might be waiting - there was, six of them!

We'd reached Esher from Hinchley Wood (by the "back door") when rain started to fall heavily. So the waterproofs put in a appearance. We continued down A307; most cars had lights on - a stygian gloom reviving memories of the 2014 Pru Ride. The rain persisted until well beyond Ockham where the Hautboy conversion to flats appears complete. By now we were thoroughly soaked and the roads were awash with water.

Arriving at a very crowded Seasons Restaurant made a baker's dozen but only five were prepared to carry on. Waiting for an improvement meant we left just after twelve. Sheepleas, Shere and Jesses Land got us to Peaslake (almost devoid of MTBers) and Radnor Lane saw us to Holmbury St Mary from the south. After a chance meeting with Jeff, Daniel had reached the King's Head ahead of us. Just in case he'd also checked out The Royal Oak!

We had not pre-booked so there was no food until after two (the trencherman had his usual roast plus two pints). Terry now made an offer of tea which was accepted with alacrity. The revised route took in Friday Street but that plan only lasted four hundred yards (to the start of the Pasture Wood climb) where Dave shouted problem. I lingered at the top of the climb and eventually was persuaded to retrace by his continuing absence - his rear mech had detached from the frame! As a more or less a terminal condition  Dave retreated to the pub to phone for assistance from his daughter while I rejoined the others at Abinger Common. Another snip  - we now headed directly to the A25. As most had not tried NCN 22, we turned off in Westcott to sample a couple of miles into Dorking. Either side of the tea stop came yet another drenching. I got home in the dark (1730) after 48 hard earned miles.