With Velo’s doors closed for essential caffeine related maintenance, our rendezvous was moved to Dedham on the Essex/Suffolk border. Dedham is always a great place to meet. As soon as you leave the village you’re straight into the riding. Today’s route was 120km in total distance, this didn’t however factor in the ride to Dedham for all participants and the ride home from the central finish spot of Colchester High St. For most riders, today was more like 140km. After an early puncture (1km) we rode steady in some very heavy fog and on mucky roads at a good pace for the first 65km. Breaking only for comfort. With one early planned departure from the ride, for the most part we were nine riders this day. Not only ColVelo Collective regulars, but representation from Boxford Bike Club, Colchester Rovers and Cycle Club Sudbury. A melting pot from the local scene, and very welcome too.
After caffeine and cake consumption in the Historic Market town of Lavenham, it was back on the road for the final 55km of the route. Although the skies cleared somewhat, the roads remained a messy affair. Faces and bodies as well as bikes caked in a rich layer of detritus! This didn’t seem to detract from the enjoyment, and the ride remained swift with spirits high. We managed a few more puncture before the conclusion. One just as we finished the final hill of the day. And in some ways, a welcome breather!? As the route approached Colchester there was the option for an additional feed stop that was taken by a few riders with the majority carrying on into Colchester. Three Punctures had put us a little behind the intended schedule.
In summary, a great route on new roads for many of the participants. Without fog and clag, we’ll be able to ride this loop soon and see it in a different light. The weather was fair. Windless, and with the rain holding off, we were treated to a classic autumn day while out on our bikes. We wait with bated breath for the onset of winter proper….