Ride no. 32 – Reeth to Kirkbymoorside, Lake District to Yorkshire Moors cycle tour Day 3

Ride no. 32 was another big one, this time 56 miles (90km) across the last of the Dales, through the no-mans land of the Vale of Mowbray, and up and over the Hambleton Hills to the North York Moors.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABustling little town of Richmond.

Had a lazy breakfast with the owners of the Bike Centre and a lovely German lady who was hiking the Coast to Coast route. Warm croissants, cereal, fruit, and a big caffetiere of strong coffee was exactly what I hoped it would be! Set off around 9:30am, full and happy, with a fierce tailwind towards Richmond. The 10 or so miles towards Richmond flew by in a blur of stone barns, sheepys, and undulating hills.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe lovely Dales Bike Centre, highly recommended for accommodation, advice, or a coffee!

Picked up some much-needed sunscreen in Richmond and left the Yorkshire Dales for the North Yorkshire Moors.

Through the flat landscape of farmers fields and hedgerows in the Vale of Mowbray, over to Osmotherly at the foot of the North York Moors. By this point I was aggitated by a stretch of very busy A-road I had to travel on for a bit, and the clouds and wind had picked up. I was definitely in the mood for a head-down, smash-out-the-miles approach to finishing the last 20 miles of the trip.

Unfortunately I had underestimated just how fiercely steep and unrelenting the North York Moors can be! And, with the mistake of opting for a shorter route rather than studying the contour lines of my OS map to find an easier route, I had saddled myself with 20 miles of 14-25% grade hills in quick succession. Although the landscape was hauntingly beautiful in its own way – the vast and barren heather-filled moors that is typical of the area – I was in a ridiculously grumpy mood. I think it was just the wind, the miles, and the hills that put me in a negative mindset. Got a few pictures, but generally just pedalled, pedalled, pedalled, and finally made it to Kirkbymoorside at around 6pm.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The bleak, beautiful North York Moors.

I arrived in Kirkbymoorside, where Jack was out collecting wild garlic for our dinner! He made a simple pasta dish, using the wild garlic to make pesto – super neat. I ate mountains of that and most of a horrible take-away pizza, sat myself down by the fire for story swapping and cuddles, and all was once well. I was completely knackered by the short trip, but really happy I did it – what a lovely way to see the breadth of this green and pleasant land.

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