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Muddy Hills

United Kingdom 03 November, 2019 • by rpcutts

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Had a few hours of Sunday light left so, despite the ominous looking cloud rolling over into the valley behind my house I set off down the hill. This lead me past my new local football ground. This was my first time riding past so I was glad to see the rout was nice and easy.

Rutherford AFC
Rutherford AFC Pitch

The path from here to Watergate Forest Park was my first muddy encounter of the day. A footpath that has been cut through a field meant for a few twitchy moments but nothing too bad. Turning one corner saw me face to face with a large Heron. No chance to take a photo as it was soon flying off.

I then slowly climbed through Watergate park having to take some care behind a few groups of horse riders and turned onto Washingwell Lane which was very muddy and quite a challenge to remain upright. The descent from here down through Wickham is when the rain hit. It wasn’t too heavy and did produce a very vivid rainbow that was a feature for the next hour.

Wickham Rianbow

The climb up from the Derwent Walk to Sunnyside via Clockburn Lennon is a muddy lung buster that has bested me in the past but managed it this time despite the conditions. Wacked it in the granny cog right at the start and just kept reminding myself to take it easy. The sun was getting low and giving some great autumn light.

Sun setting

That was the last of the significant climbing but the route past Beamish was extremely boggy and a big challenge but once done, it was back on the tarmac and downhill until the Angel of the North and a short stretch home.

I liked this route, a good short one with a reasonable chunk of climbing, will do it again and will be fun to try it in the dry.