April had proven to be the wettest month ever on record, no good for cycling! However, the first Saturday in May looked good, dry at least, as the Brothers left Ashford Hall, Croesyceiliog at 0900. It was a bit cold however, at 6 degrees and a bitter headwind. A few miles up the road to New Inn my front hub developed a squeak, square balls were diagnosed so there was an irritating ride to Usk, here I bought some oil from the ironmongers and temporarily cured the problem! After buying provisions the ride continued out along the road to Llangwm and then to the Llansoy crossroads. From here there was a sheltered climb up to the tiny village of Pen-y-Clawdd. The narrow lanes continued past Pen-y-Clawdd house and the vineyards. In the fields here we said hello to the Alpacas that are bred here for their high quality wool. The lane turned up steeply with water gently sweeping down the asphalt like an overspill from a reservoir. Passing Croes Robert nature reserve the narrow track continued to Trellech. Here lunch was taken in the form of steak and ale pies from the shop in Usk. People were turning up at the spired church to attend a wedding. Guests were going into the Lion pub where I noticed a  beer festival was due to be held in June. It had warmed up slightly and a good ride was enjoyed to Llanishen and the steep descent to Llansoy. From Usk our 'traditional' route was taken home via Prescoed, Coed-y-Paen and the Treherbert road....37 miles.

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