Ride to The Waggoners at Ayot Green

posted 30 Aug 2012, 12:55 by South Herts   [ updated 14 Sep 2012, 03:02 ]
Large group of cyclists
Nine riders ready for the Wednesday Evening ride from St Albans
The arrival of a mixed-gender couple on a tandem abruptly changed the conversation of the riders assembled at the War Memorial, from the comparison of garments available currently in the LIDL cycling sale and Ann Summers shops, to the weather prospects.  Many legs were concealed from the public gaze; was this really August?

Nine of us set off down Harpenden Road and along Sandridgebury Lane, where we collected two late arrivals, refugees from the relatively dry (thanks to Ebenezer Howard) Welwyn Garden City.  We stormed through Wheathampstead and up the hill towards Gustard Wood, passing the former Japanese golf course where an overtaking 4x4 driver hooted (was it a friendly greeting or a curse?). Then it was down the hill to Kimpton Bottom where, under the glare of the full moon, the beards of some of the riders, not the ladies, appeared fuller than usual.  The sharp left at the almost-concealed turning by Kimpton Mill took us up a sharp incline before we descended into Codicote and another descent back into Kimpton Bottom to wade our way through the floods into the village of Welwyn (this was evidently not dry as pubs proliferated), then up White Hill to Ayot Green. 

The subdued atmosphere of the Waggoners was soon enlivened by a table of eleven cyclists recounting past exploits on and off the bike.  We couldn’t understand why we soon had the pub to ourselves.