Cycle Sunday Ride Report - 19th November 2017

There are always new places to explore and today three riders set out to ride to Blue Lake Nature Reserve in Bletchley and then try to join up with National Cycle Route 51 without having to cycle into Bletchley or use the Buckingham Road. We set off on a cold but sunny morning up Riverside Path, Plantation Road and into Rushmere. We went through Oak Wood and picked up the track past the sewerage station up the hill into Great Brickhill. In Great Brickhill we took the road past the church and down the exhilarating hill to turn left at the bottom of the hill to the canal. You do have to dismount and wheel your bike down the steps to the canal path.

Turning north we rode to the next exit at Water Eaton and went over the bridge and across the roundabout into Lomond Drive. At the junction with Drayton Road we went right until the entrance to the Nature Reserve. In the reserve we rode through the car park and looked at the board to find that there is a path to Selbourne Avenue in the north-east corner of the reserve. Ride to the Blue Lake, round the southern and western edge then left over a hump and you will see the path by the side of a wood.

This path leads to a new cemetery and at the entrance turn right, under the railway and this is Selbourne Avenue. We turned left into Whiteley Crescent then left again into Newton Road. Just before the railway bridge there is a bridleway on the right to Chepstow Park. We followed the path through this lovely park and at Wincanton Hill went left to the Buckingham Road. We crossed the road and went left along the Redway cycle route a few hundred yards until we saw the Route 51 sign on the other side of the road.

 We had made it through Bletchley without having to ride any busy road. Crossing the road again we rode Route 51. The photograph is from the railway bridge over the disused railway looking towards Bletchley which is part of the planned Oxford to Cambridge route.

The old cobbles still exist on the bridge and the circular designs reminiscent of a bygone age where a bit of design set off the bridge. We continued on the lane and at the next junction went left to Mursley. In the village we turned left at Cooks Lane and through the gate at the bend along the grassy strip to the next gate, all the time admiring the excellent view. Here we went right by the fence to the gate. Once through this gate the path winds its way mainly downhill to emerge near the church at Drayton Parslow. Turning left we rode downhill over the first crossroads and then right at the second crossroads with Rectory Farm on the corner. This road leads to Stoke Hammond. In the village we took Bragenham Side to the Grand Union Canal and followed the path south all the way to Leighton Buzzard. This ride was 26.3 miles and took us three very enjoyable hours.