Travellers' Tales: The Great Weston Ride

Last year, Sue Hoddell relished being able to take part in a mass ride again

There is a certain law that says the day of any significant bike ride will be the wettest or the hottest of the year. Given the choice, I would go for the hottest – and this is what we got for the Great Weston Ride, a charity ride from Bristol to Weston-Super-Mare.

We decided to take the bus transfer from Weston-Super-Mare to Bristol so that at the finish we could collapse with a beer and a burger. After collecting our event numbers at Ashton Gate, we were bunched together and set off in small groups. Mainly quiet roads took us out toward the airport and then sent us circumnavigating the Chew lakes.

The first stop was a pub at the base of the only significant climb, allowing us to fill up on coffee and cold drinks. Fully refreshed, we set off up a steady climb, in and out of the shade and finally onto Burrington Combe, where we admired the views.

After the climb came the whooping delight of the downhill. The Somerset Levels beckoned. As the actual distance from Bristol to Weston-Super-Mare is only about 24 miles and we were doing 57, there was plenty of meandering around small lanes and quiet villages. Déjà vu was a common experience. Finally the signs for Weston- Super-Mare appeared and we followed the backroads towards town.

The final approach paralleled the seafront, then turned us into the welcome area where we were greeted by cowbells and applause.

Medals collected, it was time to rehydrate properly with a beer and kick back in what remained of the glorious afternoon. It was wonderful to be back riding with groups of friends and fellow cyclists again.