A trip to The Stores

On a day when showers were forecast, there were a reduced number of Easy Riders who assembled this week. We were significantly short of people who normally ride in the longest group, and this week, they rode with only 4 members. To compensate for this, there were 13 of us in the medium ride led by Steve, and about 10 with Bill Twinn in the short group.

We pedalled off down London Road, just as a shower broke over us. We headed along Route 16 down to Great Notley, then straight past the old showground before heading to Ranks Green. Steve looked at the Road Closed sign and sensibly took advice from a local resident who was clipping his hedge, whether bikes would be able to get past the road closure. When we reached Fuller Street, we were advised that we could get past, but to dismount by a cheery workman as there were 3 cherry pickers working on overhead electricity lines. I think he’d seen us a few weeks previously, as he struck the same pose.

Because I had stopped to take photos, I had fallen off the back of the group. The workmen directed me right out of Fuller Street, and I toiled up the hill, where Gifford was waiting for me. We reached the Boreham Road, and guessed a left turn, where fortunately we caught up with the rest of the group, having hammered down the hill. We turned right and pedalled across to Little Waltham, crossed the A131 and arrived at The Stores in Great Waltham for tea and a bun, where the short group arrived about 5 minutes after us.

After last week’s extreme heat, this week I was experimenting with two ice block drinks bottles. I drank the water as it melted, and the last of the ice lasted until half way home. I know some of the riders from the longest group can drink, or even take off a layer of clothing, while pedalling, but I can’t – I don’t have the co-ordination. So, this week’s health and safety tip, is that anyone in the group can call a halt if they need a stop, to drink enough and not get dehydrated.

Steve led our group out of Great Waltham, along to Howe Street to Littley Green and past the Compasses. Then past Leez Priory and Willows Green back to Rayne where we dispersed to our various locations.

22 miles, 9.8mph and 2 hours 10 pedalling time.

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