NEW YEAR'S DAY RUN TO TINTERN

1.1.13

New Year's day had arrived and the Bike Brothers set off on the only dry day of the holiday. The rain had eased as the Bike Brothers left Ashford Hall,Croesyceiliog, taking our usual route through New Inn, Glascoed and Monkswood. Provisions were sought from the local store in Usk and the ride carried on to Llangwm, here the beautiful tranquil lane to Wolvesnewton and Cobbler's plain had to be ridden. The Black Mountains and all the valleys around were a spectacular site on this clear day. The ride took us to Trellech Grange where there were signs saying the road ahead was closed, ignoring these we carried on. Further along, we encountered a large pile of mud that had been scraped up by a mechanical digger, it was not difficult to make out that this was the aftermath of the Angiddy river flooding during the previous few days of rain. Through Tintern Cross, the mud splattered road followed the valley down toward the river Wye. This famous river was swollen and looked in a very angry mood indeed! The coldness of the sun-deprived valley had to be left and there was  a thankful climb to warm us up to Cleddon Bog. Here the track through the bog was taken and lunch was eaten in the middle of this tranquil area of scientific interest. The narrow road through Nine Wells Wood took us to Trellech Cross, here the 'pedal-dance' had to be done to take us through the flooded lane to the main road toward Llanishen.The usual descent down the Star Pitch quickly led to Usk. Here there was bad news, the butchers had shut down, our favourite pies were no more! The ride was finished off along our 'traditional route' home via Prescoed, Coed-y-Paen and the saddle the Treherbert road....66 km with 1200 metres of ascent.

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