Combined ride to Castle Howard Arboretum and Pickering
Andrew Richardson, 19/09/2018
On what must have been the windiest day of the year, about 30 riders left the square in two groups. The Arboretum staff had phoned to confirm that they were staying open until 12 noon, having warned me yesterday that they would have to close if the gusts exceeded 40mph!
It was fairly easy riding to the Arboretum with a mainly tail wind (somebody commented how fit we all must be today!). Several others had gone directly there and there must have been about 40 riders there for coffee. However, quite a few decided not to continue (largely through fears about the ride back into the building gale).
By Pickering, there were only 6 remaining in group 1 and 12 in group 2, plus Graham and Derek who had made their own way there. After lunch in Cafe Frog, we discovered that they are closing down soon and the place is being converted into a gin bar! There could be some interesting rides home in future!
We turned into the wind at Pickering, and it continued to strengthen. Soon after Kirby Misperton group 2 were hit by a very heavy rain shower which continued to Ryton with a strong cross wind – heavy rain blasting into your right ear isn’t fun! Group 1 got a similar soaking whilst passing through Malton. However, we all got back safely with the sun shining.
One highlight of the day was Ray’s debut on his electric bike conversion. The sight of him outsprinting Robert Worrall up the hill at Great Barugh was one to behold. Despite the weather I think that most had an enjoyable ride.