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23 Aug: St Albans to Amersham

posted 26 Aug 2015, 23:34 by South Herts   [ updated 23 Sep 2015, 01:05 ]
We met in St Albans on a pleasant and sunny morning, but as cyclists always keep an eye on the forecast, all knew it was due to be dire later in the day. How far would we get on what was planned to be a fairly long ride? We were pleased to welcome two guest riders, Freddy and Keith Austin, friends of Tracey, who were keen to see a bit of Hertfordshire and do a few of its hills. 

Lots of riders at the start
Gathering in St Albans

Setting off, we did a bit of main road towards Hemel to start with, then down to Nash Mills and the new marina development. 

Modern footbridge over canal
The modern bridge at Nash Mills

Crossing the river, we did a stiff climb through some new housing to Felden. Was visitor Freddy (14 years old) able to keep up with a seasoned group of cyclists? Yes - as I gasped up the hill, he had the sauce to glide past effortlessly without even appearing to be breathing deeply.  He was on a super light bike, was that it, or were we over seasoned? We made good progress along the pleasant lanes to Venus Hill, then the dip at Ley Hill, then more quiet lanes to the River Chess. A further climb up Hollow Way Lane (recently re-surfaced) soon brought us to the centre of Amersham-on-the Hill and a favourite coffee stop.  

Cyclists at a junction
At Bovingdon

Nobody rushed their refreshments and the storm clouds were gathering over Hertfordshire (and Bucks). Frieth would be a long and mucky ride in the wet. It was soon obvious that nobody was keen to press on any further because of the imminent bad weather, so there was a general dispersal back home, some picking one route, some another. Personally, I went for a less direct one, and got soundly soaked.

Only 33 miles today

Richard 23/08/2015