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Mountain Bike Ride - Sunday August 18th 2013

By Brian Richardson

Six members and a friend set off from Hayfield to cycle Nigel’s route encompassing the countryside of Hayfield, Mellor, Marple and New Mills. Nigel devised the route two years ago for last year’s event, which unfortunately was abandoned for lack of attendance. Without a map amongst us, and with occasional guesswork punctuated with debates at some junctions, we think Nigel led us along most of his intended route!

There were lots of interesting trails to challenge us. The ride covered a variety of surfaced tracks, and quiet roads, which gave access to some lovely viewpoints of the Peak District and Cheshire plain. We explored a very well-documented iron-age ‘hill fort’ at Vicarage, above Mellor, and we had lunch fighting off geese (my poetic licence) at Etherow Country Park.

The route was sufficiently long and strenuous, with some rough tracks, some steep ascents and technically interesting descents to test us all. Unwittingly, one downhill track we rode was in a state of semi-reconstruction, and we discovered it was sign-posted ‘closed’ and fenced off at the bottom! We returned to Hayfield by the Peak Forest canal and Sett Valley Trail in various states of tiredness, but very satisfied with the ride and sunny weather.

Thank you, Nigel for a memorable day enjoyed by us all.

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