It's hard to believe it's two years since our last weekend away. Having got club runs up and running again in June, it was about time we had another weekend away, so eight of us opted for a couple of days in South Lakeland. basing ourselves in Ulverston, with six staying in the Premier Inn, and a further two at Bardsea Leisure Caravan site just down the road.

Saturday (A Group)

by Mark Clegg

Jim, Jackie, Chris, Sue, and myself were joined by daytrippers: John, Peter and Tina, bringing us up to eight riders, heading south to the coast at Bardsea in just a hint of mist and drizzle, but not enough to put anybody off. We followed the undulating coast road to Rampside, then along Roa Island Road to Roa Island and a photo opportunity by the Barrow Lifeboat Station.
Continuing along the coast we heading into industrial Barrow-in-Furness for lunch in Morrisons (They were completely out of Pies!) before crossing the bridge to explore Walney Island.
By this time the sun was out, and layers were discarded as is was warm enough for us to make the return journey in short sleeves. We could even make out Heysham Power Station right across Morecambe Bay.
Returning by the same route, we stopped for Ice Cream at Moat Farm enjoying clear views across for bay from their private beach.
Overall, 41 miles covered, and 1000ft of climbing. It was surprisingly undulating, considering we were hugging the coast most of the time.

Saturday (B Group)

by Jim Cooper

Three of us in the B group, Sandra, Dorothy and myself. On Saturday we climbed to Broughton in Furness and a brew stop, then a tough ride over Broughton Moor, unfortunately the fell was in the mist so we didn't get the views. Dropping down into Torver we rode along the eastern shore of Coniston Water to the Bluebird Cafe on the lakeshore. By this time light rain was falling so it was into the Cafe for a snack. Through town to Monk Coniston and then the narrow road along the eastern shore. We stopped off to see the Anthony Gormley Statue at High Nibthwaite. Returning then to Ulverston we worried about the hedge trimming going on and punctures, however we survived. Via Penny Bridge thanks to navigation by Sandra and the magic map with my missed turnings we rode back to Ulverston. A tough ride of steep hills we covered 41 miles with 3900 ft of climbing. Overcast day but warm light rain showers at times, a very enjoyable day ride.

Sunday (A Group)

by Mark Clegg

On Sunday, we split into the same two groups, and without the daytrippers, that left five riders heading north to Coniston, for a clockwise tour of the lake. Today would be a little hillier than Saturday, but the weather was pretty much the same, with low cloud and damp spells. Again nothing worth worrying about.
Arriving in Coniston village, we descended to the Bluebird Cafe for lunch, then another photo opportunity at the lakeside, before starting back along the opposide shoreline, crossing our outbound track at Lowick Bridge before dropping back into Ulverston and crossing paths with the other group in search of a cafe.
Being late Sunday afternoon, it seemed we arrived at closing time, but the Ice Cream shop was still open, so we had five happy riders.
Finally we went round to County Square for some silly poses by the Laurel and Hardy statue outside Coronation Hall.
Hillier today, but slightly shorter with 33 miles covered, and 2200ft of ascent.

Sunday (B Group)

by Jim Cooper

The three of us decided to ride up the eastern shore of Coniston Water, again another wrong turning by me and a short ride along the western shore we arrived at the south of the Lake and rode north along the shore to Brantwood House, we decided the views were even better from this direction. After stopping to view the timber pier from BBC Look North we enjoyed a brew stop at the cafe at Brantwood House, the former home of John Ruskin and now a museum with lovely gardens. We were made very welcome at the cafe and stopped for a while for a chat about the steam gondola and covid with some americans before a boat full of tourists arrived so we skedaddled.

Via Monk Coniston we climbed through the National Trust woods and up past Tarn Hows, down Hawkshead Hill. After a brief look around Hawkshead we up onto Hawkshead Moor to Grizedale Forest, an expensive coffee and cake stop at the mountain bike centre we decided it was worth the expense. Proceeding down through Oxen Park and Penny Bridge we climbed up through the village of Banstead Gates. I again missed the turning to Ulverston and rode down through the woods to the bottom of the hill. Again riding back up the ladies were waiting for me. After much leg pulling about my navigation and eyesight we continued along the right route. Bumping into the other group on the hill down to Ulverston we failed to find a cafe open and willing to serve after 4.00pm we rode back to The Premier Inn for a hot shower. 38 miles covered on lovely quiet roads with lots of steep hills with 3800 ft of climbing.