Pop up to Carsington Water Saturday 20th April 2019
Well, what an adventure!
Six set off from Macclesfield with the prospect of a full day in the saddle on a glorious Easter Saturday into the trails of the Peak District.
Climbing straight up to the Cat whilst the early morning traffic was light, quickly descending towards Buxton, then a sharp right left through Harpur Hill and the back of East Sterndale where we encountered our first of the gravel. Within a mile we hit the trails big time with a stony climb to join the High Peak Trail past Hurdlow, to Parsley Hey where we enjoyed a well earned break, met loads of other cyclists and were joined by Griff and Jim.
Continuing southwards we took the left fork onto the Midshires Way/Pennine Bridleway until we were forced to leave at Longcliffe due to the collapsed bridge. We had fun clambering down the embankment forming a relay line manhandling our (and fellow rider’s electric) bikes over the wall and down the slope to the road.
On through Brassington and Knockerdown to Carsington Water Caravanning site to enjoy the kind and generous hospitality of the Edwards family camping there, who treated us to a magnificent barbeque. Thank you Sue!
The route back took us throught Bradbourne and the footbridge over the ford near Lea Hall to join the Tissington Trail. Northwest to Biggin and Hartington then the picturesque climb to Pilsbury. Some fool had devised the route to follow the bridleway past Pilsbury Castle Hills to Crowdecote: All I can say is probably more sheep frequent this trail than cyclists riding Planet X road bikes! We gingerly descended the very rocky and grassy slope safely and Rob saved Alison’s day by finding her phone which had detached itself from her bike somewhere along the route!
Back onto tarmac to East Sterndale where the temptation of cold drinks at The Quiet Woman proved too much for some of us.
Axe edge and the final descent via the Cat and/or Macc Forest and Langley finished the day off, myself returning home around sixish, after spotting a hoard of orange clad cyclists outside the Kings Head in Gurnett.
68.7 miles, 5596 ft elevation and over 6 hours riding acc. Strava. Fab.