Long day

A house in Steep Street

Today’s guest pictures shows a house in Steep Street, Lincoln.  It was taken by my brother on a visit last month.  The street is called Steep Street because it is very steep.

A house in Steep StreetI had a very flat day today.  After a quick rush up to the Moorland feeders, in my capacity as fill-in feeder filler, I came back for a large breakfast and as soon as I could get organised, I set off on the fairly speedy bike.  The forecast had offered a cloudy, dry day with light winds and I thought I would see how far my legs would take me on a very flat excursion.

It was a bit chilly (12 degrees C), I hadn’t slept very well and I had a slight headache so things didn’t look too promising but once again the miracle cure offered by Dr Velo came into play and it wasn’t long before I was cruising along at a respectable speed (for me) with no complaints from head or legs.

I stopped at Gretna to ring Mrs Tootlepedal and arranged to meet her for lunch on the English side of the Solway. After a false start when our chosen pub turned out to be closed, we met at Bowness-on-Solway and enjoyed omelettes and chips.  By this time, not only had Dr Velo cured any ailments, he had also made the sun come and it was a perfect day.

I had to stop to let these cattle cross the road and walk out onto the Solway shore
I had to stop to let these cattle cross the road and walk out onto the Solway shore

Although the road is basically as flat as a pancake, every now and again, a little rise gives you a view.

solway at DrumburghThe tide was quite well in and the pleasure of cycling (or driving in Mrs Tootlepdal’s case) along the English shore on such a beautiful day was very great.

After lunch, Mrs Tootlepedal headed back home and I pressed on as far as Abbeytown.  This village, not surprisingly, is named after its abbey, Holm Cultram, a Cistercian foundation of the 12 century.  Not much remains of it now but the Abbey Church, much repaired, is still there.

Holm CultramI had a quick look inside.  It is very plain but with a fine wooden vault.

Holm CultramI turned for home myself after this visit and in general was too busy pedalling to stop for pictures but there were many very pretty churches to be seen on the way.

Newton Arlosh
at Newton Arlosh…
at Bowness-on-Solway, said to be made from the stone from Hadrian’s Wall….
…and at Burgh-by-Sands, with the sun in the wrong place by now.

Just how flat the countryside is can be seen from this picture of the gloriously named River Wampool  which I crossed shortly after lunch…

River wampool…and this view over the Solway to the Scottish shore which I took on my way back.

SolwayI ate and drank enough to keep my weight at the end of the ride exactly the same as when I started (no mean triumph on a hot day)  but I wasn’t very well organised and ate too much before half distance, leaving myself with a single banana for the way home.  By the time I got to Gretna, I was feeling peckish and stopped for an ice cream (two scoops) and a iced cherry slice to see me home.

As I got near to Carlisle, my chosen road home was shut for roadworks and I had to come round a long section of the new Carlisle bypass.  This has an excellent cycle path but numerous roundabouts, at each one of which the cyclist has to stop and give way to cars.  This stopping and starting, together with an unscheduled pause to let the cows come home….

cows coming home…took a bit of the stuffing out of my legs and my last 20 miles showed a considerable drop in speed.  Still, I managed the whole trip in fractionally under seven hours and as it was exactly 100 miles long, that pleased me a good deal.  It is surprising how much worse I would have felt about the journey if I had taken five minutes more and gone over the seven hour mark.

My favourite picture of the trip was taken just after leaving Kirkpatrick Fleming….

KPF trees…and gives a very good impression of what a stunning day it was as far as the weather went. Both Mrs Tootlepedal and I had a really good outing.

I got home in good order and took a couple of flower pictures just for a bit of variety.

poppyligulariaSadly, the sun had come round and I was too late to take a flying bird of the day so I can only apologise.  I should have pedalled faster.

Those with time hanging heavy on their hands can see the ride details here.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

33 thoughts on “Long day

  1. I congratulate you on the impressive mileage – I’m always a bit shocked when you record mileage like that! It sounds like a lovely day: a date with Mrs. T., many fine churches, and cows. What more could a man ask for?

  2. Blown over by the length of your ride. You must have been well pleased!
    Superb weather, beautiful surroundings and I particularly liked the view of the cattle on the Solway shore.

  3. Another wonderful cycling effort and the photographs are really “sparkling” with colour and clarity. How blue the sky is! It looks more like Queensland. My favourite pictures are your first one with the cows and your last one with the vibrant yellow flowers. I’ve had to stop in my car to let cows cross but never while on a bicycle! 🙂

  4. I can’t even contemplate pedaling 100 miles! I’m glad you had such a perfect day. My favorite photo is the one of the cows crossing to the Solway shore. Beautiful churches, also. Such rich history around every bend.

  5. What a lot of miles, the equivalent of a marathon for a cyclist I should think given the time. You did your hundred miles in about the same time it takes me to walk twenty six. Some lovely churches and a lunch date with Mrs T, what more could you ask?

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