With only 5 days to go before we focus on hiking for a week, we’re desperate to get some training rides in. The circular route from home took us over the Ridgeway into Berkshire. We pedalled primarily down B roads and unclassified roads, through Midsomer Murder type villages and past isolated country piles which if they’d been for sale would have been through Hamptons or Strutt and Parker. The bright blue sky made this already beautiful area look even more stunning and visibility was great due to the strong westerly wind. It was hard going at times – slight inclines in the ‘wrong’ direction took a lot of effort. We’re desperately hoping that in August we will have northerly winds to help us on our way and not the prevailing sou’ westerlies.
Our efforts were rewarded as we reached Yattendon – another attractive Berkshire village. We discovered ‘The Pantry’ – a delightful coffee shop, with scrumptious looking salads and home made cakes as well as sandwiches. The atmosphere inside was quite buzzy and we had service with a smile. If you’re in the area, it’s well worth a stop for excellent quality coffee and a cake or lunch (note, its not open on a Sunday). We decided to sit outside in the very pleasant garden to enjoy our sandwiches and decided it would be worth planning another training ride to incorporate The Pantry again.
Fuelled up, we forced ourselves back onto Ruby and Roberto and pedalled homewards. A challenging ride as we battled the wind. The Met Office is forecasting slightly less blustery conditions for our next ride on Wednesday. Hurrah!