Monday, 22 February 2016

All day Intermediate ride on Saturday the 20th February

  Fixing a date in advance in February to have a ride is always a chancy business weatherwise. It can either be cold and sunny, or wet, cold and windy. The weather was this time overcast and with a strong westerly wind when five riders set off from Kingston, with patchy rain in the forecast for midday. By then I calculated, we should have the wind largely behind us after rounding the westerly edge of Heathrow Airport, and in the event this proved to be the case.
  It took us only an hour via Bushy Park to reach a halt at the information Centre in Bedfont Lakes Country Park. The wind was directly in the face while riding, and the path in the Park rather wet in places. We rounded the airport with jets thundering overhead on takeoff and on cue patchy light rain began as we turned east and the long straight roads to Harlington via Sipson and Cranford. I wonder how much longer this stretch will be rideable if airport expansion goes ahead, but right now a good speed can be maintained with the following wind.
  We arrived at Osterley after a ride of just over two hours and in time for the cafe to open. Not surprisingly, the park was rather deserted as it was raining more heavily with a strengthening cross wind, and was still doing so when we left an hour later to ride back via Richmond and Richmond Park to the end of the ride by the A3 at New Malden. At times I began to wonder if riding in February was really worth it, wind and rain being the ultimate turnoff. Two days later I think it probably is, as you get a good workout and soon recover when warm and dry at home.
  It was good to see Eddie riding again after a long absence, his bike and gear immaculate as usual, and thanks to Godfrey, Toni and John for being so resolutely cheerful. Total distance was 33 miles.
Here we are after lunch at Osterley in assorted rain gear.

Dream on. Views of CS5 .

  I was crossing Vauxhall Bridge last week and took this of the recently completed stretch of Superhighway from the South Bank towards Pimlico.
  If only this sort of cycle lane standard was more widespread in the suburbs, we would see many more people choosing to cycle as the default transport choice.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

All day Intermediate ride on Saturday 20th February

On the 20th February, meet outside TKMax on Kingston Bridge at 10am to
ride around Heathrow to lunch at Osterley Park.
Returning via Richmond Park.
No hills and a distance about 35 miles at an easy pace. Should be finished by about 4pm, so lights are not now essential.