Lark and Larkling rides to the Roaches

 

I do like the Roaches Tea Rooms.

Is it because of that sense of achievement when I’ve slogged up Roach Road to get there, or the fabulous views as, after our repast, we homeward plod our weary way, like the allegedly fictitious plowman of my old school chum Thomas Grey, who I seem to remember spending far too long mooching around that country churchyard for his own good? Today was it the smug satisfaction of having considered and rejected an approach from the Devil’s Elbow? Or the cheerful welcome that the staff always give me when I call to warn them in advance and the certain knowledge that there will be tables waiting for us? Is it a pang of nostalgia for that long ago club run in October 2005 when I first came here on my second ever ride with the legendary Macclesfield Wheelers? Answers on a postcard please.

Today’s average speeds: me (Lark) just tipped over to that psychologically important 12.0 mph as I switched on my turbo on my returning legs along the flat on my return leg, while Ian (Larkling) clocked 11.9 to his garage but he does live up a mountain. So maybe the Larklings were faster than the Larks today? Sports scientists will surely wish to assess this extraordinary result in the context of a comparative analysis of our respective routes:

Lark https://ridewithgps.com/routes/30842565

Larkling https://ridewithgps.com/routes/30849377

but I’ll save them the bother - we did the same route to the cafe and then we Larks did an extra loop up Dead Man’s Hill to Rainow, while the Larklings returned through the forest.

So, great to have 10 riders out across these two rides, a weekend when there are no less than nine club rides to choose from: Sat Social Ride, Lark and Larkling, Sat Club Run, MTB, Sunday Summer Training Ride, Sunday Easy Ride, and two pop-up rides tomorrow: a Goldilocks Ride of 70 easy flat miles into Cheshire at 12-13 mph, starting at 9.30 at Broken Cross and organised by Paul R; and a 75-mile ride tomorrow starting at 9.30 from the car park at Barley near Clitheroe taking in Waddington fell (from both sides), Trough of Bowland, Jubilee Tower, Top of Bowland and Nick o’ Pendle. This one’s being organised by Mark W.

If you don’t know about these two pop-up rides, it may be because you are not yet a member of the Macclesfield Wheelers Members Group on Facebook. This is a closed group for members of the club only and it’s a mine of useful info (like these two rides). The club has 265 members, 200 of whom are members of the FB group. If, like me, you don’t really want to be ‘on’ FB, whatever that means, you may wish to do what I do, which is just use it to keep up to date with club stuff. I have no profile photo, only two FB friends (both in the club; you know who you are), never look at notifications or friend requests (sorry if you have sent me one) and to be honest don’t even know, or feel I need to know, what being a friend on FB actually means. I never look at any other FB pages or ‘join’ any other FB groups if that’s what people do and I never post anything that isn’t club or cycling related and wouldn’t know how or where else to do that anyway. Maybe I’ll get round to all that one day, maybe not. Luddite? Probably. Anyway it works for me in this way at the moment. Maybe it might work for you.

Chris

Raph, John (Larks), Simon, Ian, Richard, Jim (Larklings conveniently standing together to save typing), Steve, Mark (Larks). Waiting en route: Phil (Larkling but he almost got to the cafe before the Larks).

Raph, John (Larks), Simon, Ian, Richard, Jim (Larklings conveniently standing together to save typing), Steve, Mark (Larks). Waiting en route: Phil (Larkling but he almost got to the cafe before the Larks).

That lunch in pictures (1). Nicely presented, nice bread, great to have both dairy-free spread as well as tea with soya milk, but I could have done with more baked beans really. Yes really.

That lunch in pictures (1). Nicely presented, nice bread, great to have both dairy-free spread as well as tea with soya milk, but I could have done with more baked beans really. Yes really.

That lunch in pictures (2). Phil, Some Old Buffer, Steve, Mark, Raph, Simon. Photo credit: John, who didn’t have anything else to do as they seemed to have forgotten his lunch.

That lunch in pictures (2). Phil, Some Old Buffer, Steve, Mark, Raph, Simon. Photo credit: John, who didn’t have anything else to do as they seemed to have forgotten his lunch.

No picnic under the hanging rock as we line up at mile 30 for a sneaky practice for the Geoff Stevenson Freewheel Competition (at which I am consistently rubbish): Steve, Raph, Simon (who joined us at the cafe just as we were leaving, graciously losing his lunch to ride back with us. I’ll rephrase that, graciously forsaking his lunch to ride back with us), Mark, John.

No picnic under the hanging rock as we line up at mile 30 for a sneaky practice for the Geoff Stevenson Freewheel Competition (at which I am consistently rubbish): Steve, Raph, Simon (who joined us at the cafe just as we were leaving, graciously losing his lunch to ride back with us. I’ll rephrase that, graciously forsaking his lunch to ride back with us), Mark, John.

Burntcliffe Top. About mile 33.5. Me? I’d burnt all my matches.

Burntcliffe Top. About mile 33.5. Me? I’d burnt all my matches.

Mile something. Photo credit: John, taking a quick paparazzi one on the move, hence this rare shot of ‘Ride Leader On The Bike’.

Mile something. Photo credit: John, taking a quick paparazzi one on the move, hence this rare shot of ‘Ride Leader On The Bike’.

Larks hovering above Lamaload, mile 40.

Larks hovering above Lamaload, mile 40.

Simon awaiting more Larklings.

Simon awaiting more Larklings.

Larklings Richard, Jim.

Larklings Richard, Jim.

Larklings Phil, Jim, Richard. Larklings photos by Ian.

Larklings Phil, Jim, Richard. Larklings photos by Ian.

 
Ride ReportChris Cottom