Awoke in Big Nana's tiny attic at 6.30am to the sound of rain hammering on the skylight and gale force winds rattling the gutters.
Bugger. I just remembered that today was the day I had to stop talking, wingeing and blackmailing people into charity donations and actually start cycling. Pity as the other stuff was rather fun.
We drove over to Morecambe to meet my brother who was staying at the Midland (with a room overlooking "Morecambe's biggest Shoe Shop". Perhaps they sell size 18's? )
We set off about 9.30am in a pelleton of 2 along the cycle track to Lancaster and guess what? The rain had stopped and the wind was directly in our backs, pushing us along like little rose petals in a fast flowing stream. Wonderful!
The euphoric mood ebbed somewhat when we turned out of the Lune Valley and hit our first 1 in 8 hill but the powerful gusting wind stayed true and helped us even up the hills.
We encountered few people but lots of sheep and after a record pace eventually found ourselves settled down in Settle eating sausage rolls and chips as part of a special cyclist sports diet. I settled up afterwards.
Then came the mammoth 3 mile climb out of Settle which involved a certain amount of walking.
Finally we made it to Burnsall Red Lion around 5, to be joined around 6 by the junior pelleton who had left Morecambe at 1pm. Fit young bastards!
Good meal and couple of pints and day one was put to bed!
Slept about 4 hours thanks to adrenalin, my brother snoring and a deeply offensive blog comment since deleted by it's author.
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