Things didn’t go to plan today. In fact the plan went west the night before.
The 60 odd mile Steve Cummings route that I was planning on doing wouldn’t transfer into the Garmin Edge 305. I was also going to ride it in reverse order just to further complicate things. The forecast said showers, I can cope with showers, but they lied. Google Steve Cummings , now riding for Discovery Channel.
The only bit of kit I had on that wasn’t Aldi badged was the Altura Hi Viz Jacket. You can’t miss me in this and it’s a quality bit of kit, breathable, waterproof, vented at the back and comes with these fancy waterproof reflective zips at the front. Pity I forgot the Aldi Winter overshoes, I will pay for this later. The Aldi ski gloves are getting an outing so off I set in a light drizzle.
The botton of Rest Hill is flooded so it’s a singing the rain act as I plough through it with the feet out of the clipless pedals. I’ve taken the only picture of the ride on the return.
It’s a bit dismal as I head through Brimstage and Thornton Hough but spirits are still high.
I’m still dry, it’s a penetrating drizzle on the outside, the Aldi gloves seem to be doing the trick and before you know it I am at The Eureka Cafe. There is a slight problem, it is closed. There is another chap outside that I have seen there in the past.
I retreat to the warmth of the Mini dealership at the Two Mills lights. Pleasant enough place but they don’t seem to take me seriously when asked a few questions. My next car will probably be a Mini but the pushbike outside and me dripping all over their cars probably diverts their attention. (don’t forget the Hi Viz jacket). The other guy prefers to wait in the rain. Once I’m sorted I check to see if it is a late opening and it’s off on the rest of the ride.
The Eureka Cafe breakfast is part of my ride, so I’ve been thrown off course. The penetrating drizzle persists as I head back through Puddington and Burton. Thoughts of the Steve Cummings route long gone. I take the road down to the marsh at Burton. I don’t know if the firing range is still in in operation but these days but I doubt it. Denhall lane is always a challenge, I saw 8% gradient at one stage so its not easy. Terry (77) showed me this one.
Feeling a bit empty and a bit damp I call in at Ness garden Visitor centre not surprisingly I’m the only customer, its early, too early for lunch and the weather is horrible. I settle for a pot of tea and and a mince pie (no cream). Once I’ve got the overtrousers and jacket off I find I’m dry underneath and nothing like the drowned rat dripping every where when I walked in. It’s a nice setting, bright and modern and the staff are cheerful.
On the way out I chat to a remarkable lady on another table initially about the weather but also covering health and fitness. Another one of the cards was given out. I only ever ask that it is passed on to someone who might benefit from a site like this. This year has been one of unbeleivable change for me and it’s not over yet!
The ski gloves are not proving to be 100% waterproof the right one is sodden, probably with water running in through the cuff. Heading towards Neston I head down Church Lane as this avoids going through Neston Cross. Emerging near the Library I head down the road to Parkgate. I’d normally stop here for a drink, admire the view and one day have an ice cream as a treat. Not today I chug along the front the drizzle not bothering me.
Once past The Boathouse the only way is up, this used to be a stiff climb for me but it’s easier these days. Long, a bit of a drag but not steep enough to get out the saddle for. Once at the top road it’s straight on past the Glegg arms (where I used to drink in younger days) and up the hill to Heswall. I purposely choose this route these days as it is always gridlocked with traffic. Today is no different.
Today its another call in to Dee Fine Arts to see if there is anything that catches the eye. The problem today is I’m dripping wet, I have quick look around but think I shouldn’t be looking at any watercolours the state I am in. Back on the bike and heading towards the lights down the outside of the traffic I see what the cause of the holdup is. A bus is trying to turn right into the station. Its way is blocked by a very considerate (not) motorist ignoring the keep clear markings on the road.
Just a well the Firestation opposite didn’t have a call too. After that the road is clear to the lights not surprisingly.
Right at lights along Pensby Road to see my mum and dad. They can’t get over the change in me too. I’m contemplating a couple of changes for next year, but where do I go from here?. It won’t be backwards. The plan changed again, the West Kirby, New Brighton route got changed to Gills lane, Barston dip . Along Station road and back to the bottom of Resthill. There was the little matter of crossing the flooded road to take into account. So I stopped and took a picture of it, the only one on the ride.
Rest hill doesn’t look much from here, but its the end of every ride for me.
Taken in a gearing of 40/25( no granny ring now) it’s taken out of the saddle at the bottom, maybe seated after the rise at the gates to Storeton Woods.
Stats. 23.88 miles
1444 Calories burnt.
Max 28 mph Average 13.6 mph . Weather : Awful, Feelgood factor: High
Site link given out: 1
Eureka Cafe Breakfasts 0, Zero, nought. A first.
This was only half of the day, the rest of the day is another story in its own right.