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Archive for September 2016

Shortened Chiltern Odyssey

Posted on Tuesday 13 September 2016 by Clifford French

It was largely out of regard for David Kurtz, tasked with organising the Saturday rides programme, that I volunteered to lead a ride in September. As I made the commitment, I was aware that there was always a risk that approaching autumn could bring foul weather.

The weeks leading up to my ride, scheduled for 10 September, gave us days of really fine weather. However, the weather forecasts from Monday 5 September promised more fine weather every day up to and including Friday and every day from Sunday onwards, Saturday bringing heavy rain. Of course, I told myself, the forecast could change. It didn’t.

There were no texts from intending riders, no anxious phone calls: “How hilly would it be?” “What was the pace?” “Would my hybrid be suitable?” Perhaps, with a little luck, no one would turn up. Knowing that rain brings down flints from the hills, I dusted off my Airnimal with its bomb proof tyres in preference to my usual road bike. Although the ride blurb stated “Leader will meet en route” I took the train to Paddington to see if anyone would actually turn up. Arriving at the appointed time, I found three riders, two regulars and one newcomer. After a short discussion we decided that as it was already raining and the forecast was for heavy rain, we would call it off. After all, seismic events that had produced the Chilterns were not forecast: the hills would be there waiting for us on a fine day.

No, that’s not how it happened. more »

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