I had arranged to meet Andrew Fergar and Trevor Hughes at Otford Station at 09:47, so set off from Orpington at 08:45! Arrived a tad too early but grabbed a fine pot of English Breakfast Tea in a nice Tea Room next to the Otford Pond.
This was much needed having drank too much Shepherd Neame Late Red the night before!
Andrew and my fellow cyclists arrived spot on time, however error number one resulted in me being on the wrong side of the railway! Once this little issue was resolved we set off on a voyage of adventure ably led by Mr Hughes and his Garmin.
One or two minor deviations, courtesy of the Garmin, saw us arrive at the Winterdale Cheesemakers. However, we first had to negotiate the infamous Vigo Hill. If you have never had that pleasure and fancy a challenge then root it out on your OS map and have a go as it’s right up there for a challenging climb.
Quite a few purchases were made at the Cheese Shop, with its lovely looking fresh bread and stunning sausage rolls. Next stop was lunch at the somewhat shabby looking but very welcoming Black Horse pub. Ham, Eggs and Chunky Chips washed down with a pint of Youngs, all very nice. Several of the group took the opportunity to sample their fine hospitality.
We then decided it was time to bat on. This came to an abrupt halt with our one and only puncture of the day, which unfortunately was on the Felt!! Upon closer investigation it appeared to be as a result of approximately 3 inches of rubber missing from the tyre. After a swift tube change we set off again.
It wasn’t too long before we had another Garmin issue with Trevor’s GPS parting company with his bike on a down hill section. After collecting up all the pieces Trevor did a fine job of putting it back together and it even started working again, we’ll that was until the batteries ran out.
Step up Geoff to assume leader responsibility.
We headed back to Eynsford, where I peeled off and rode, rather gingerly, back to Orpington, leaving the others to grab the train back to Bromley and Catford.
All in all a great ride with special thanks to Andrew and Trevor for their organisation and ensuring the weather stayed nice for all.