29th July 2014
The last of what have proved popular bike rides this year was on Sunday 27th October – to see the Autumn colours of Reddish Vale. With poor weather forecast, there were fewer riders than normal, but all those that came – some familiar faces and some new ones – thoroughly enjoyed themselves….”please can we have more trips over the winter?”
As we gathered at our start point, we were pleasantly surprised to be given shelter, warm drinks and biscuits by Bernard, in the Pavilion in Heaton Norris Park on Love Lane. Then underway at 10:30 past dozens of bowlers competing on their winter green. Just across Lancashire Hill, down we dropped to see the “source” of the Mersey, where the peaty Goyt and Tame meet.
From there we were in the countryside as we followed the Tame gently upstream, then struggled up a steep track to reach the course of the old Tiviot Dale railway.
Although so close in to Stockport the route was new to some of us. A long, level ride under a canopy of multi-coloured (but dripping!) trees led eventually to a brake-challenging downhill, to the Tame again and the Visitor Centre, where we were greeted with a big pot of tea, coffees, juices and snacks prepared by the Friends of Reddish Vale.
Refreshed, the riders wanted more, so onwards, up the trail, under the echoing railway arch, passing high above the noisy M60 to reach the quiet of Hyde Hall – partly dating from 1625 and seriously in need of repointing.
Back we went by the horse fields and with just a small deviation across some meadows, returned to the Pavilion where despite us all being wetter, most of us tired and some of us rather muddy it was ….”there will be more rides next year, won’t there?”.