Cake of 9 Candles
Nine of us set out from the Sportsman on to some pleasantly firm singletrack through the woods, a nice surprise considering how muddy some of them had been. When we descended the first hill, the temperature dropped noticeably, so we did some more weaving around the trees to warm up. We then did some normally unrideable tracks marvelling at our progress as we skipped across frozen hoof prints. At Walton we did the back gardens run, then ascended back up from Epsom Downs before descending again under the motorway, here we met Sam who had missed the start and was riding the trails looking for us. Past the clay pigeon shoot, I had to keep my eye on the time, as we could not arrive at Bike Beans before the cake was ready. So we zig zaged around a bit more enjoying the frozen paths. As we came out into the sun, we thought it a good photo opportunity and a passer by kindly took the shot and provided us with the dog. I still had to kill a little time so decided to ride along the edge of a field enjoying the sun, problem was that the snow had thawed the mud and previously clean bikes got covered in mud including Sue's nice new bike. In the nick of time, before the bikes got any muddier I got a text from Helen saying the cake was ready and we descended down to bike beans.
Here we met Helen with the cake of 9 candles and celebrated Phil's birthday, other members of the cafe joined us in singing happy birthday to him.
And why was Helen not on the ride you ask, just one of those days when her freehub seized up, its all fixed now though, so we look forward to her riding with us next time.