As Team 5 members gathered at Squires, it was apparent that as Chris Otter was early, Pete was obviously not attending the ride, (being in his word suffering with the lurgy), so that gave us a chance to: A- volunteer a Leader, B: - Be away on time, C: - wait at the gate for Chris Otter, ( Chris had left the attendance sheet on the table so had to run back at get it ) so we very nearly but not quite, left on time.
Dave Hardcastle came up with a ride for us, and in true 'Masters' style did away with a briefing, his only words were: I'm not sure what route I'm doing but we'll go to Fewston Farm Shop and then decide on a lunch stop later, and 11 riders then lined up for a Right out of Squires and away into Sherburn and down to the lights for a Left toward Tadcaster, Left through Sutton and out to Bramham, and much to everyone's surprise took a Right to Clifford and Boston Spa, but everyone managed to keep tight together and we all got through without losing anyone.
A good run up to Harewood had us then travel down to Poole In Wharfedale, Over the river Wharfe and Left toward Leathley, then Left again to Farnley ( The road so shiny and wet it concentrated the mind, grip being somewhat iffy ) and the trip over Lindley Wood Reservoir, on the Climb up the hill on the other side an older Gentleman on Bicycle was struggling so much he was all over the road ( Funny to see ) but luckily no one knocked him off, and after a good trip over the hill ( good overtakes aplenty ) it was a Left down over Swinsty Reservoir Causeway and up to the Farm Shop for our T & P ( Hot Pork Pie ) Stop.
During the T&P Stop it was Decided that Hawes was to be Lunch with the Creamery as a finishing Point and those who wanted Chips etc. could carry on down into Hawes its self.
Chris had spoken to Pete Tidball prior to our leaving Squires to let him know our T&P. ( apparently the lurgy wasn't so bad after all ) and about 10 minutes after we left Fewston Pete arrived. And so the chase began ( After his T&P as Cedric was at Fewston too having done a check ride on a T5er ) with Pete and the newly certified T5er ( sorry didn't get his name ) going to meet us en route or at the Creamery.
A couple of riders left us to make their own way home as we left the Farm Shop and headed off toward Greenhow Hill, and a good open road let us keep up a good pace, the weather and wind being not too bad at all, past Stump Cross Cafe ( busy with lots of cars filling the car park ) it was into Grassington and a Right onto a narrow Dales Road to be stuck behind “Farmer Giles” and his Muck Spreader , Luckily he turned off into his farm but left some of his load scattered on the road for us, ( How blessed we are ) and so off to Kettlewell we smell, oops I mean go.
A steady run along to Buckden ( due to traffic ) before a left up into Deepdale and the lovely road up the valley following the river Wharfe ,with very little traffic it made for a good route through the little hamlets with mysterious sounding names, before the climb up to the tops ( Lady luck again with us, we had a tail wind for a change ) over the aptly named Baggermans Road, a couple of Cattle Grids catching out several riders who didn't quite hit them square on, back ends sliding out ( Some pretty impressively from where I was sitting ) before going over the sharp ridge ( Feels like going over a cliff edge, and always better to keep tight left , and the long drop ( With terrific views ) down to Gayle & Hawes for our lunch break.
A bit of mumbling was going on as it seemed a little on the slow side for food service, but as usual it was worth the wait and duly seated and eating, Pete finally arrived to join the fun, and after lunch we split up to go our own ways, with 4 of us electing for a “quick” trip back to Squires for a final coffee.