Ride report – B/C group does Sheephouse Lane – twice!

Six riders left Swinton for a recce ride of the UK Fire Fighters 2UP Duathlon course (Kevin Woodward, Stephen Roberts, Julie Hamilton and Michelle Fairclough representing Salford CC next Sunday).
A brisk pace was set up the A6 to West Houghton, then Lostock and Horwich to Rivington before a swift grab for the gear levers to get the low gears for the haul up Sheephouse Lane. The first climb was knocked off in sunshine, with the relative heat causing a certain amount of perspiration to be expired on the way up.A swift descent into Belmont then round the course via Michelle’s favourite road through Abbey Village to the turn at the M65 jcn 3. South to the reservoirs and a quick left up Angelzarke, much to Rhianna‘s consternation; “don’t look up at the top, just bang it in bottom gear and pedal” was sage advice. Over the top, another rapid descent, taking care at a nasty left hand bend at the bottom lest we had to drag a rider, sans bike, out of the reservoir LOL. And another little climb to the Bowling Green cafe at Rivington for some well won coffee, cake and bacon butties.
Well, we were in Rivington, so it would been rude not to just throw another ascent of Sheephouse Lane in, wouldn’t it (?). Somewhat different this time, at a slightly more moderate pace and up into thick mist and murk; very different to the previous ascent. Down into Belmont, left and the way home via Lostock. Only for Rob to choose the final route home including a little snatch through Fernhill Gate and Middle Hulton to see the climbing legs off.
Then the final plough home, with a nice tailwind down the A6 to home. Well, it would have been home but the combined might of Kev, Andy and Rhianna led this clean living athlete astray once again for some rehydration at the Barton Arms.
All in all a great day out, 62 miles, with 4,600 feet of climbing. Not too shabby 🙂

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