This time last week, purely by accident, I met a group of cyclists (having tea and cake of course) at a nearby garden centre. After a brief chat, I was invited to join their group, the Weston Old Gits Cycling Club. As the website promotes, 'A cycle club for retired and refined gentlemen who indulge, weekly, in gentle exercise.... and deep and meaningful banter.' Sounds just up my street.
They meet every Tuesday, so today I went out with them. A few of them live in my apartment block so met Norman and Bert outside and we made our way to the normal start point at the Borough Arms in Weston. 6 more Old Gits joined us and we tootled off into the unknown, well to me anyway.
The pace was a little quicker than I thought it was going to be, not helped by the big fat knobbly tyres fitted to my mountain bike. Most of the group had hybrid type bikes with Norman and Bert using electric. After turning off the A371 near Banwell we climbed a fairly steep hill, the only one on the route thankfully. Descending on the other side, spotted this milk maid by a waterfall at Max Mills Farm. 10 out of 10 for presentation.
Further on, we turned of the public roads at Winscombe and picked up the Strawberry Line, a disused railway that runs between Yatton and Cheddar. This line used to carry the strawberries between Clevedon and Cranmore but the introduction of foreign, mainly Italian, produce led to its dissolution. We rode along this to near Sandford and picked up the public roads again heading towards the Caffle Garden and Craft Centre at Puxton.
Turning off the Strawberry Line, came across an apple orchard, the produce of which is destined to give many folk a serious headache! A little bit off scrumping went on which was surprising, I thought it was a capital offence in this part of the world.
Caffle Tea Stop
A very popular spot with the WOGCC, and after tasting the delicious apple cake I can see why. Any member of the group who has a birthday pays for the tea and this week, it was Bernard's turn, thats him in the foreground in the white top. We sang Happy Birthday to him, deservedly, as he was 79 years young yesterday. No wonder he has an electric bike.
A very enjoyable 22 mile ride out with a good bunch of blokes. Looking forward to the next one. The low spot of the day was getting a puncture which apparently is tradition for newcomers to the group. I think it had more to do with riding over some hedge trimmings on the latter part of the ride. Luckily a couple of quick stops to pump the tyre up got me home. Mending it will be a good opportunity to change the tyres. A good day out, thanks lads.