Wetherby – Kettlewell (slower group not following the main group), Thursday 14th July 2022, 86 miles,

Graham’s ride for the day involved a ride through Coverdale up the back of Park Rash and a descent into Kettlewell.

Since we ended up having a long ride albeit not the planned route it was felt a report was reasonable.

Six riders assembled in the Shambles for a 9.30am start. They were Graham, Michael, Sean, Bill, Nick and Steve B. As Bill and Nick were marshalling at the evening’s TT they weren’t going the whole way, that meant as much as the route was appealing it left me reconsidering my options since the last thing I did not want was to slow the ride down.
Anyway our route took us through Knaresborough and onto Ripon from where we started the climb to Grewelthorpe followed by a descent into Masham. The three quicker guys pulled away and were happy enjoying their coffee when the slower group arrived.
Bill said he was turning back from Masham despite attempts by Nick to persuade him to go on further. Nick said he wanted to ride part the way into Coverdale before turning back.
It was apparent while at Masham the breeze had developed further into an increasing headwind.
The three quicker guys left us to our Coffee and snacks as they carried on with each group wishing the other an enjoyable day.
Bill left us for home and Nick and I headed for East Witton and on into Coverdale. Straight away from leaving Masham we felt the affect of the wind.
This didn’t detract from the scenery as we headed west. I had not been through West Scrafton before, previous rides were on the north road of the valley. Both of us agreed the scenery was worth the effort. At West Scrafton we descended to cross the river Cover and climbed up to Carlton from where we had the support of the wind for our return.
Nick was wanting some lunch and a stop at Middleham was planned. Unfortunately the tea rooms were closed or being renovated. Thankfully we managed to get a drink and flapjack from the Open All Hours shop.
The descent down wind from Carlton had been fun and so it continued as we headed for Newton Steward, Thirn, before turning towards Masham just before Thornton Watlass and on towards West Tanfield. From there Wath, Hutton Conyers and Sharrow flew by. With the wind continuing to assist we headed through Skelton and Boroughbridge. The final lap down the A168 ensured Nick was back in time for his TT duties. Great day out and Nick’s company.
Special thanks to Graham for a cracking route and hopefully I will be able to do it fully next time.

Steve B