Ominous clouds did nothing to deter people from our first summer ride – a record 24 people joined us on Saturday for a ride up the Caledonian Cycleway, a seven mile jaunt up as far as Lochthorn Library and back. After a bit of a complication with a faulty Orange bike followed by what appeared to be a complete breakdown of the rental system (and it would help if the helpline was actually open on a Saturday!), we managed to get most of the group off with one person joining us later having dashed back to get his own bike and then time-trialled up behind us to catch us up at the library.
A group of that size does tend to show up the limitations of Dumfries’s cycling infrastructure – it must have taken us three goes to cross the lights at Dock Park and as always we can’t fit everyone on the traffic island as we wait for the lights to change. Once on the cycleway there are a few more roads to cross, but at least the wait for the lights wasn’t so long. And it gave some of the adults a chance to catch their breath … as always on these rides, it’s the kids that want to sprint away, no matter how tiny.
Chocolate chip cookies and the chance to talk bike at our rest-stop soon revived everyone and, with the group reunited we pedalled for Dock Park, arriving safely back just as the first rain drops were coming down. You can’t ask for much more than that!