Well, just what has happened to our weather? I made my way over to the Cross not really expecting to see anyone else mad enough to come out in the 30-40 mph westerly winds with a side order of heavy rain forecast for midday. However,Sam was as usual waiting there with his coffee and we were soon joined by Paul, so three out!
Our scheduled destination, the Harrow Inn at Steep, doesn’t really have much in the way of indoor seating, especially if you don’t want to be roasted by the open fire (not ideal for encouraging post lunch cycling) and anyway, it seemed a long way in the conditions! So one quick planning meeting later and it was off to Rowlands Castle for elevenses and to undertake a reassessment of lunch destination from there.
I think we now know how it feels to be in a wind testing tunnel – we barely made double figures mph against the headwind and the few times that it was a cross wind were ‘interesting’ to say the least……… The roads were very wet in places and the ford at Rowlands Castle was in full spate showing the effects of the week’s almost constant rain, Not surprisingly there were very few other cyclists out and about!
After a very pleasant break at Bumblebee Café, definitely a favourite for the welcome and food, I consulted my rain forecast oracle. It predicted heavy rain in about 45 minutes. This was enough for me to turn tail and enjoy a rapid wind assisted blast back to Chichester, leaving Sam and Paul to ride up through Idsworth ( light rain) onto Compton (heavy rain) for a final stop before heading back themselves.
A very short 20 miles for me with the others managing 27 miles. Despite the conditions it was strangely satisfying to have got out on a quite vile day!