April Ride out – A Chiltern Conundrum!

After Sunday’s ride out I got to thinking about what makes a good club ride out and came up with these.

Firstly good friendly company, a fun start to the day, a ride with plenty of twists and turns on roads new to us or at least not well traveled, destinations and stops that add to the whole experience, great views along the way and a challenge or difficult section that will stay in the memory and keep as a talking point years after the event.
Well on Sunday Mark & Tracy treated us to just such a ride so thanks to them for a fantastic day out, how they managed to organise such stunning weather as well I don’t know but so glad they did.
We started of with bacon butties at the Clargo homestead along with some banter and laughs. They then led us out into the country and those twisty roads along with a zillion cyclists out enjoying the sunshine. Our main stop was in Henley along side the river for ice creams and a drink sat there watching families play sweethearts doing what sweethearts do on a sunny Sunday and all the ducks, swans and boats on the river Thames was a real joy. Our return journey saw us finish up at the H cafe for more refreshments and more good conversation. 
Well I know that you are now asking what Mark found for our “Do you remember when-“ moment as if the previous wasn’t enough well Mark had found this road. It was about a mile of up hill single track road with about a foot of very wet mud from the rain the night before stuck right in between the two section of road and these being the width of a car tyre and badly cut up so that it was like riding on cobbles. This road was kept to a car width by dirt banks on either side with woods on both sides making the road quite difficult to see in the dappled sunlight. Mark refused to tell us how much he had paid the group of cyclist half way up on our side which meant that we had to cross over the mud and test our nerves and handling when our back wheels squirmed and slid over onto the other lane.  But cresting over the top of this climb onto safer ground certainly made us all feel good our three passages especially.

So all in all Mark and Tracy had given us all a fantastic and enjoyable club ride it really is what HOC Oxford is all about many thanks to both of you.



Colin Webb