With a starting number of 13, including our two ride leaders, we headed off from Dock Park along the Whitesands to begin our ride to the 12 Apostles near Newbridge.
After negotiating the Buccleuch Street Road bridge by foot due to the closure of Loreburn Bridge, it was a steady ride via Cuckoo bridge to the crossing on the A76. We were delighted to be joined by an extra four riders at Lincluden, so the group of now 17 continued through Lochside to the Irongray Road which provided a tougher than usual ascent due to a strong headwind. This was however rewarded with an enjoyable freewheel into Newbridge, for the final push up to the stone circle.The freshly cut field provided an enjoyable stop complete with cake AND biscuits. The stones made an excellent assault course for the younger ones who were quick to scramble over each stone, suggesting the purpose of this stone circle could well have been a playground.
As we regrouped for the return ride a red kite was spotted soaring above us, one of the closest sightings to Dumfries. After some deliberation we headed back the same way, as a few riders agreed the shared use path along the A76 can be a broken glass hotspot. The only down side was the enjoyable hill into Newbridge is a testing hill on the way back up. So in true Tour de France spirit when the going got tough we simply ascended on foot.
Several groups peeled off on the way back, so we arrived back at Dock Park with six cyclists. Another summer afternoon well spent. So with only three rides left, if you haven’t had chance to join us yet, please do! We’ll be venturing out into the wild west of Dumfries along the Glen Road next week.