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08 July: Hatfield to Lea Valley

posted 9 Jul 2012, 04:58 by South Herts   [ updated 13 Jan 2017, 23:02 ]
The wet roads were almost deserted today, which made it a peaceful route to the Lea Valley and even more peaceful as only Neil had the enthusiasm to join me on a rather foul morning.  Of course, we were competing with TV showing the British grand prix, Murray in the Wimbledon final and a mountain stage on the Tour de France.  It was also the day when the Olympic torch came to our area.  Maybe if we charged for our rides people would turn up to get their money’s worth!
Heading north from the cafe on NCR1 ##

 We soon warmed up on a nice hilly route through Newgate Street and Goffs Oak, then over the Connect 2 cycle bridge to cross the A10, from where I explored a new route into the Lea Valley Park.  Here there were ducks and coots wandering everywhere.  So many that the confused wildfowl were colonising some of the larger puddles we cycled through.

Surprisingly, the Orchard Café was packed out with a large buggy-pushing mothers’ group, although most had overflowed out of the café onto the patio.  It seemed to be a regular meeting point, but they were preferring to stay there scoffing rather than do any pushing in the rain.  Somehow, I can’t see that becoming an Olympic sport.  Judy had saved us a table so we stayed and dried out a bit.

Large flint

It was still raining on leaving the café, so we decided to forego the pub and the cakes at Upshire and headed north on NCR1 to loop back home.  Not easy going as the gravel topping was being washed into piles and I soon had a flat tyre.  At least the cause was easy to find – as I pulled out the inner tube the flint was still sticking into it, leaving a large cut in the tyre.  We left Neil at Dobbs Weir - having discovered some lovely mud in the Lea Valley, he was quite keen to get good and dirty on his mountain bike and returned via the towpath to Ware & Hertford.   Looks from the photos as if he achieved his aim, proving you can have fun cycling in wet weather!

Tow path mud##
Hose me down

8 July 2012

Jon 8/7/2012