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Saturday, 9 May 2009

To Dalkeith on 9th May

View To Dalkeith May 09 in a larger map
22 people turned up today - a good show, considering that the forecast was for rain, and that there was a fair amount of wind.

Even with this largeish group, we kept up a brisk 20-milers pace of about 9 mph, because we were mostly on cycle paths, meaning that we don't have to pause to wait for people after junctions. Also the route was reasonably flat so we could maintain this pace for a while.

We headed out to the East, to Musselburgh along Route 1, then South along the Esk to Whitecraigs, and then along the old railway line to Dalkeith High School. There's a short section of fairly busy road heading into Dalkeith centre, and then we turned right into the Country Park. We avoided paying for entry as we weren't there to use the facilities or wander in the woodlands, we were just using it as a through-route and were going to buy lunch in the cafe (I don't think that they knew what hit them when 22 hungry cyclists turned up - the chef must have rolled his sleeves up and got down to it though as we had a swift service and everyone seemed to enjoy their lunch. We sat outside at the picnic tables. A bold strategy perhaps given the intermittent rain we'd been having, but we were mostly lucky and the rain held off for most of lunch time (and then we moved under an umbrella).

A few photos:
To Dalkeith May 2009

We had asked the ranger if we could get out of the back gate of the estate, which he kindly agreed to, and drove ahead of us to open it for us. From there it was a short ride back to Route 1 in Musselburgh, then back along the Innocent Railway (in a downpour). For once, most people opted for the tunnel route, as the wind was favourable. And also it was dry in there!

Next ride will be Saturday 13th June at 10.30am as usual. Chris will be leading us to the South of the city, with lunch in the Mortonhall area. More details nearer the time.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Saturday 9th May - to Dalkeith

Our destination this month will be Dalkeith Country Park. This is a very pleasant route, along the River Esk Walkway and the Dalkeith Railway Path. It'll be a straightforward 22-mile round trip, with no serious hills to challenge us, and mainly traffic-free. As usual, we'll go at a gentle pace, with plenty of time for stragglers to catch up.

Our lunch break will be at the Stables Cafe in the Country Park. They do a good range of sandwiches, soups and other snacks, with indoor seating if it's cold, and seats outside for those who prefer to bring their own food.

As always, we'll meet at the top (north end) of Middle Meadow Walk, in time for a 10.30 start. We'll aim to get back to town mid afternoon. Remember, all our rides are free, and you're welcome to bring your pals.

If you can't make it on Saturday, there are plenty more rides coming up. The website (www.cycling-edinburgh.org.uk) has a fully up-to-date list, currently showing around 20 events for the coming weeks.

Finally, look out for the current issue of Scottish Cyclist magazine, which is on sale in most bike shops. They have given our group a very good write-up (you might recognise some of the folk in the photo).