As we chatted under leaden skies at Union Corner, we tried to identify the rider approaching at some speed. It looks like Clive. Gosh it is Clive – on his own. After joking that he had probably dropped Kath on the climb, lo and behold here appeared Kath some 20 seconds adrift. Initial thoughts about EPO were dispelled when we realised Clive was aboard his gleaming new e-bike, resplendent with retro bar-mounted bottle and kickstand. Looks like we will have another speedster to draft behind, or perhaps someone to challenge Nigel for the polka dot jersey.
By the time we got to the Halvasso turn we were a rather disconcerting 13 strong (or 12A as some superstitious types insisted), and as usual there ensued a long and convoluted debate about our desitination. A sort of consensus on the Green Room emerged, and off we set in Ian’s wake as we do, although I still do not understand whether he is the uncrowned run leader for all time or if he just sets off first and we all follow. In any case, off we went to Stithians, Gwennap and Blackwater before stopping at the ATV Centre crossroads. There was then some disagreement on the route we should take – follow the leader or decide amongst ourselves? This seemed to signal a possible crisis for the club’s ride leadership policy. Do we want a strong leader, or do we want true democracy? Do we want to follow someone with innate navigational skills and a built-in A to Z of Cornwall who can take us on lanes less travelled, or do we want to pause at each junction to vote on the direction to take? Maybe neither, or could it be both? This is probably a question for the Committee to wrestle with (good luck with that).
We did go straight on, possibly because nobody could be bothered to turn round, and we rounded the St Agnes Beacon and descended to (on?) the Green Room, which was mysteriously empty. After our fill of various breakfasts, toast, tea and coffee, off we went again up Water Lane to Goonbell and then skirting Blackwater we arrived at …. the ATV Centre crossroads. With a growing sense of unease we slowed (even more than usual) as we approached this divisive junction. It was as if the entire group was holding its collective breath, but as it happened we simply sailed straight across (after looking both ways, of course) without question. Just as well, as cycling at even a sedate pace is difficult if you can’t breathe.
Then it was the usual route to Scorrier, round the outside of Redruth to turn right just before Lanner and so on to Stithians Lake, over the causeway and onwards to Halvasso and home. All in all, an enjoyable and in turns a testing and a relaxing ride (roughly depending on whether we were going uphill or down). About 46 miles for most folk (I had another Garmin fail). Colin