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12 Oct: Hatfield to Puckeridge

posted 15 Oct 2014, 08:32 by South Herts   [ updated 24 Nov 2015, 23:32 ]
To Tyler’s Causeway or not to Tyler’s Causeway?

That was the mission this ride, a ride for which I had stepped in to lead. I had the vision of going to Dobb’s Weir via Water End, Bookmans Park, Northaw, Newgate Street and down into Broxbourne that way, but I mentioned this to one of our riders and his face paled, for there are two whacking great hills between Northaw and Newgate Street.
Have no fear; I decided to change my route. So nine of us set off for Dobb’s Weir via Bull’s lane, Bell Bar, Woodside and a lovely little meander up into Little Berkhamsted. From here we started back onto a familiar road but I soon shunned the delights of White Stubbs lane, and played with the new found wonder of Ashendene Road which lead straight into Bayford and past a great pub, soon we wiggled around to Brickendon, past the wild life park and then we were back onto familiar territory as we bombed down into Broxbourne. BOOOOM and we were negotiating that rather awkward little bridge over the River Lea that leads us into Old Nazing, and then it was a quick waddle up the NCR1 path to the café at Dobb’s Weir. Now for those that don’t know this café had been shut for a while, not due to flooding as you might expect but due to a great landlord who wanted to refurbish the place and it looked really nice.

narrow boat on river
Narrow boat on the River Lea
Well from here I took a route that mirrored one I had done before but going in the other direction, and so we headed out to Roydon, Stansted Abbotts, here I didn’t do a turning (Kitten Lane) and had to make an awkward U turn on myself but no real harm done. Then we wiggled up through Hunsdon, Widford and Much Hadham. It was here that I remembered Judy’s blow out the last time I came this way, when everything was recovering from being flooded. Now it was just a short trek into Standon and then onto Puckeridge (LLLLLUUUUUUNNNNCCCHHH). Just to note it looks like the Bell in Standon might be closed.

Lunch was a great little feast of baguettes, soup, tortilla chips and visitors. Yes Stuart and Dave (Hitchin Nomad) turned up to say hi and it was great to see them.
After lunch it was a bash on to the best café in Hertford (Rose’s).  Now it was really good that we had Jon with us because he had the right of the route and I had got mixed up with a shorter route, but hey and we headed out to Great Munden then down into Dane End.  Ha ha I took them up White Hill past the golf course; here mike commented on the fact that we never go through this area backwards and it made for a pleasant change, especially Sacombe Park, very nice.

Rose’s was just as expected: great. Then I led our thinning group out towards Essendon and then onto home. The weather for the day was very pleasant and made for some great riding.

I enjoyed this ride and I hope everybody else did as well.

Neil 12/10/2014