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Sheffrec Cycling Report - 13-02-11

Blog Posted on 14 Feb 2011



The forecast was for continous rain all day, but it was actually dry at 9 o'clock as the 25 or so Sheffrec riders assembled at Malin Bridge.  We headed out along Loxley Valley, round Damflask reservoir and on to Bradfield.   A short climb up to Ughill Moors was rewarded with views down to Strines and Dale Head reservoirs, though both were a bit indistinct in the increasingly heavy drizzle. Along the Strines road to Moscar, where we joined the A57 for the fast descent to Ladybower.  Win Hill was dimly visible, with cloud streaming off its summit.  We left the main road to Bamford and descended to Yorkshire Bridge, then up to Thornhill and onto the minor road parallel with the main Hope Valley road, through Aston to Hope itself (where we had our first puncture).  A swift right turn in the village took us onto the Edale Road in increasingly heavy rain.  Cloud levels were lowering and the summits of Lose Hill and Kinder were completely obscured.  Ignoring the temptation of Coopers cafe at Edale, we pressed on to the steep and unrelenting slope to Mam Nick and the Rushup Edge Road. 


A flat ride, then a fast descent past the Chesnut Centre took us into Chapel.  Our numbers meant we had to use Morrisons rather than Stocks cafe to refuel.  Outside after eating, the rain was harder than ever, but by now we were committed (and many would say we should be). A few opted to return the way we had come, up Rushup Edge and straight back to Sheffield.  But the majority pressed on, towards Whaley Bridge, then left after passing under the railway onto Long Lane and up the hill to Dove Holes.  This part of the Peaks reminds visitors that this is a working landscape, with our route running beside the mineral line and the huge buildings of the quarries in Doveholes Dale. A left turn took us to Smalldale and soon down the hill to Peak Forest, where we crossed the main Stockport to Chesterfield road and entered the scenic calm of Perry Dale.  Turning right at the end of the Dale, we could see part of our route from the morning as we passed along the opposite side of the valley from Rushup Edge.


A very rapid descent of the 25% gradient of Winnats Pass took us down to Castleton - and our second puncture. We were mainly concerned to get back as quickly as possible now, so kept to the main road through Hope and towards Hathersage.  However, that did not prevent a third puncture - these are a ever-present hazard for the cyclist, and more likely to occur when rain washes flints onto the road.  Through Hathersage then, and up past Toad's Mouth and the Fox House Inn, over Stoney Ridge and down the hill back to Sheffield.  Just under 60 miles covered in a little over 4 hours riding (though nearer 5 hours elapsed time, with our cafe stop and punctures).  We were all soaking wet, some of us were very tired, but we had all had a good day out despite the conditions.  Roll on summer.


For more info on Sheffrec cycling club please check out their page