A really good night’s sleep and porrige for breakfast set us up for the day. We chatted over breakfast with the other guests at Lower Farm, Thornfalcon, near Taunton. Karon and I had managed to sit and paint the farmhouse door the evening before so we had a mini painting show too. Knowing we had more mileage than usual to get through, we left the farm at about 9.30am. We only had a mile, if that, to get back on the Bridgewater Taunton Canal towpath then set off at a good pace. Traffic free and level! Must be cycling heaven. By 10.40 we were in Bridgwater and in search of a cafe. Conveniently, one presented itself right by the cycle path so we dived in for a quick cream tea then it was cross the river and back out of Bridgwater on the opposite bank to the one we’d arrived on. Under the M5 – such a contrast to our mode of transport as we passed below.
A short way on and we took to the lanes across the Somerset Levels to the North East of Bridgwater. With a mostly following wind progress was good but we realised that we were not going to make the 1.00pm rendevous with Linda and Dave from the Tandem Club, who had kindly offered to put us up for the night. We were aiming to meet them at Winscombe. I texted to say we’d be late and a little later Linda called. The handlebar mount meant the phone was really easy to get to and I chatted briefly before handing the phone to Karon as we’d hit a descent and were picking up speed quickly – I needed to get to both brakes!
South of Winscombe we were going to join the Strawberry Line, another cycle path built over an old railway line. There was a short stretch on a busy A road and a climb to get to it but once on it we again appreciated being able to cycle traffic free. At the next road crossing, Linda and Dave were there with their tandem, waiting to guide us the rest of the way. We stopped at the only pub in Winscome as both Karon and I were needing food. Fortunately they were still serving.
While inside the rain started, though not too heavily so the remaining ride was damp but we didn’t get a soaking. Our hosts set a brisk pace and we struggled to keep up, even though the going was mostly flat for the 10 mile ride from Winscombe into Weston-Super-Mare. So, now we are bathed and fed and our ‘stuff’ is drying over various hangers, ready to get soaked in rain or sweat or both again tomorrow, depending upon what the weather throws at us, as we head North through Bristol then and start to follow the River Severn up the counrty.