Social ride reports – 29th January – Ride leaders choice week

We are lucky enough to live in a beautiful part of the country, and the rides from Otley are exceptional, but a bit of variety does you good. To that end we had a couple of ‘away days’ as part of ride-leaders choice week, so we could take in a few new roads. Like recent ‘away’ rides with the mountain goat group, these proved very popular, with lots of murmurings of ‘we must do this again’.

Similar splendid murmurings have also been heard from Steve L who led a ride for the first time and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. A big thank you Steve for volunteering.

Oh, by the way, that strange warmth on your back on Sunday was the sun. Loverly it was!


Spikey strenuous spiral from Skipton

Liz’s report…

For Ride Leader’s Choice day I decided to show the club the wonders of North West Yorkshire so we headed out to Grassington from Skipton for a 30-mile ‘spikey’ loop. I was delighted to have 9 join me despite the distance from Otley and the cold!

Although it was ‘nippy’ we couldn’t believe how sunny it was for this time of year and it meant some amazing views across the Yorkshire Dales National Park. For the most part we were cycling on quiet backroads and we decided in hindsight that the ‘spikes’ were more ‘lumps’ – or maybe we’re just used to Yorkshire ‘hills’ now!
We were warmly welcomed at Cobblestones Cafe who’d reserved us some tables under the patio heater and we were very impressed with the price – a bacon/egg sandwich and a coffee for under £5!
The return leg saw us nearly crossing a ford in honour of this weekend’s CycloX World Championships, but even though we (or should I say ‘Christine’) like a bit of ‘off road’ sometimes if it means discovering a lovely Sustrans route, even that was too much for us!
Thanks to Kaz for her chatty backmarking, and thanks to Stephen and Michael for Guiding and Backmarking when we split after the cafe stop to cater for the different speeds and for people who needed to get home quicker.

The ride seemed to be quite popular so I can’t imagine this is the last time we’ll see us heading our (north) west….


A gentle ripple from Ripley to Ripon

Steve M’s report…

Ride Leaders Choice took us to a Ripley castle for a gorgeous loop through the Deer Park and to Ripon for our coffee stop and what a coffee stop is was – (Olivers Pantry an early candidate for “coffee of the year”) then a lovely ride through back lanes to arrive back at Ripley .
Possibly the “strongest” gentle ride the club have run for a while with some “ringers” in the group. They made up for it by riding out from Otley and back again making it into a 60 mile trip ….
Top marks to Julia and Claire for sharing backmarking and everybody thoroughly recommending a return trip in Spring .
Photos of the church in the deer park and Graham enjoying some “map porn” !

Map love.


Hipsters go to Harrogate

Matt’s strenuous ride report…

A select group rode over to Harrogate via Fewston reservoir. After warming up with the climb out of Askwith, we enjoyed an undulating ride over to Harrogate. After enjoying a brew and bacon butties at Prologue café (and a bit of time drooling over some very nice-looking, and nicely priced, bikes), we enjoyed a fairly leisurely ride back to Otley via North Rigton and Armscliffe Crags.

Hipsters only… facial hair was compulsory on this ride.


Gentle Wharfedale Wanderer

Karen’s report…

The ‘Magnificent Eleven’ rode out of icy Otley on the gentle Wharfedale Wanderer route emerging into the sunshine in Menston, through the ‘burbs of Guiseley and up and out to Carlton and Bramhope’s High Trees – our much-anticipated pit stop (and before High Noon!)

Sandra and Catherine jointly won the best (and biggest!) brunch award with William and Chris coming a close second. Backmarker Dave (for which many thanks) and Eddy left us for their home run where Phil assumed the backmarker role (again thanks Phil!).

So with nine of us remaining (including Ali, Liz and Andy) we returned via Sunshine View (and it was!) and then West Chevin, where the only ice still visible was in Ali’s lime and soda at the Fleece. Great to ride with you all. Thanks and see you again!
– Karen


Fewston foray – a stretching ride

Steve L’s report… (copied from his Facebook post… hope you don’t mind Steve, but it was so nice to hear how much you enjoyed leading for the first time :-))

I really enjoyed leading a social series ride for the first time on Sunday and would recommend it to all. Thanks Adele, Andrew, Anna, Peter, Sheila and Steve for your company and a special thanks to Sheila for back marking.

Another new cafe stop for me at Fewston Farm Shop. I make that 4 cafes in the last 4 months that I didn’t know existed.