Path: Home | 19th July 2015 : Rivington

Top of Shaley

The Day of Changed Plans: Destination Rivington

The Day of Changed Plans

One must admit that it was a slightly disappointing turn out this morning at the Blue Anchor. Things did not bode well when I was the first person there; definitely a first. Eventually, a grand total of 6 optimistic/foolhardy souls decided to trust the change in weather forecast for a dry day after the early morning rain. Shame on the pessimistic/sensible amongst you!

An issue was quickly identified when it was realised that neither Neil Hughes nor myself had even heard of Gisburn, let alone know its location, so the proposed challenge ride destination was abandoned. Neil, however, said (and this information will become relevant shortly) that he still wanted to do a tough ride. As many of you will know, he is doing the Ride London in 2 weeks and has set himself the rather ambitious target of sub 5 hours for a hilly 100 mile course, so wanted to get the training in. He is doing it for charity and if any of you would like to support him in his valiant endeavour I’m sure he will post the link in the comments below. That plug should earn me a cake next weekend.

So, first change of plan was to head back into the city and go over to Wales; a bit of a pain as we had just come from that way. As we started riding back, I was feverishly thinking of ways to avoid the pointless 12 mile round trip we would be making. I boldly claimed that I could find my way over to Rivington from Aintree and so we could go and do a few climbs around there. Great plan! Quick turn around and off we went.

After 19.89 miles of the ride (we had made it to Orrell), Neil asked me to pull over. “I’m just not feeling it mate, think I’m going to head back”. Are you kidding?! Pull yourself together, man! We’re doing this ride because you wanted to do a toughie! Luckily, after a little cry and some words of encouragement/chastisement, he decided that he would push on!

On we went, into a bit of a wind most of the way, but finally (and to much relief that my bold claim was well founded) Rivington Pike loomed large.


Oh. Yeah. It’s Iron Man UK today, isn’t it? They go up Sheephouse Lane, don’t they? That’s where we were going, wasn’t it? Guess we’ll have to go elsewhere then, won’t we?

Change of plan again, back towards Parbold and we’ll just have to do the old faithful Parbold, Ashurst and friends circuit, build up some miles and go home! Upon learning that Neil had never sampled the delights of Fettler’s Wharf, we also threw in that little diversion for our lunch. He was suitably impressed.

So, a few diversions, a few changes of plan, a good old North-West wind, but 80 miles done and a nice little man date at Fettler’s Wharf thrown in!

Nick Hemus

Nick Hemus