Sunday, 6 April 2014

To the Tatsfield Bus Stop in thick fog – and we get a major soaking too

Having been foolish enough to say yes to tiramisu in an Italian restaurant in Wimbledon last night, I felt I had to get up early and ride out to somewhere like Westerham, but the weather appeared to be dictating otherwise. It had clearly rained in the night, but seemed clear when I woke up at around 0510hrs and considered getting out of bed. By 0537hrs I'd done just that and went downstairs to make a bowl of porridge, which I was eating around 0600hrs.

Thick fog at the Tatsfield Bus Stop, Sunday 6th April 2014
There was a constant threat of 'abort', but by the time I found myself outside, hand outstretched to feel for rain, there appeared to be nothing so I headed off for Warlingham Green where, at 0706hrs, I found Andy on his Kona Blast.

Westerham had been the plan, but we figured that the benches there would be wet and the weather was looking threatening so we opted for the long way to the Tatsfield Bus Stop. There was nothing in the way of traffic and no other cyclists either as we wound our way around the country lanes, down Hesiers Hill and up Beddlestead Lane. Halfway along we encountered an ever-thickening fog, so thick that we couldn't see any of the usual landmarks – the totem pole-shaped dead tree trunk and, of course, the communications tower that means there's only a few yards before Clarks Lane.
Andy and Matt at the Tatsfield Bus Stop. I was staring like a lunatic at the fog.
We turned left and headed for the bus stop, but I missed it, mistaking Approach Road for the road I'd just exited (how odd is that?). But eventually we arrived and got out the tea and cereal bars. The fog remained thick throughout our time at the bus stop and we watched a couple of cyclists disappear into the murk before packing up and heading into it ourselves.

Since the flooding earlier in the year, there's been a few closed roads around the Whyteleafe area, prompting Andy to ride to the Green with me before saying goodbye. Today he informed me that the roads in question had re-opened and that he'd be taking the off-road track off the 269. By the time we reached it, the fog had cleared but the heavens had opened and we both got a serious soaking as we headed for our respective homes. The rain didn't let up and by the time I was padlocking the bike in the garage I was truly soaked through. I reached home at 0906 hours, thanks to the 0700hrs start earlier at the Green.

The rain eventually eased up but there have been cloudy skies all day and a constant threat of showers.


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