27 Dec 2017

Saturday 16 December 2017

Run earlier this year; five days before the Winter Solstice, with the temperature at or around zero, we were surprised to find a growing stack of bikes on our arrival at Castle Gardens. 11 at coffee including friends from YCC, 10 on the ride, others reported as riding direct to lunch from various points in Dorset, amazing!!
With tables booked for 12.30, after a slightly delayed start, we were all still together and upright at Sandford Orcas. It was only approaching the permafrost of Corton Denham that the extent of the ice field became apparent. An impromptu session of ‘Dancing on Bikes’ took place on the right turn to South Cadbury, all stayed upright!! It was here that Phil and Martin decided to head direct to Wincanton to rendezvous with Dave Turner and his crew. Passing The Queens Arms we met a trio from YCC who elected to join us for lunch. This table is getting bigger!!
Remaining 8 pressed on through the mix of hedge trimmings, mud and melting ice,  covering the lanes towards Shepton Montague before turning toward Stoney Stoke and Wincanton, arriving 10 minutes down on schedule at the Garden Centre, all still upright!! No mechanicals, no punctures and probably the slowest 20 miles some will have ridden this year!!
The eventual total was 21 more or less seated and fed together at lunch, well done The Nursery, there must have been quite a baby boom in Wincanton!!                        
 Jill’s ride in was not uneventful, we would remind her of the words of John Bunyan ‘He that is down need fear no fall’ we think Dylan said something similar.
On the road again it is downhill to Wincanton and the various routes home, the majority splitting off at The Lonesome Pine.
Back in Sherborne in the rain the ride leaders noted the route had been 3 miles longer than the Wednesday practice run, not only that but the ducks at Milborne Wick were on the wrong side of the road and the water wheel was missing. Had we inadvertently become victims of the ‘Waterloo Crescent Triangle’? This phenomenon occurs west of Stowell when the navigator has left off his glasses and placed Garmin top to bottom on the handlebar, thus left becoming right and so on.
Even with the extra miles we will not match Mary’s remarkable 10,000 miles for the year and still 2 weeks to go. Thanks to all who joined us, too many to mention, we hope you all had a safe journey home.  
Nicky and Peter Vaughan


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