NINEWELLS WOOD

17/02/02

After weeks of rain we finally had a dry day, it was a Sunday afternoon, quite cold but at least it was dry! The week before we had a evening ride to Blaenafon , but this was a complete washout, so we abandoned it in Abersychan. This day however promised to be good for cycling, we met at 2.00pm at the ‘Blackout’ junction near Newbridge on Usk. We cycled to Llantrisant, where we took the lane that mirrors Llewelyn’s Dingle, all was peaceful here as two large Buzzards circled in the sky. The roads were almost completely dry now, but there were large patches of water here and there, as the land tried to dry up after the weeks of flood. We dropped into Llangwm and carried on up the climb toward Cobbler’s Plain, this was the first real ride of the year and we knew we were in for a treat as we hit the road to Trellech Grange. We were to have a spectacular descent in the late afternoon down the valley to Tintern, tall trees heralded our descent to the village by the river Wye. Tintern is a very picturesque place, beautiful old buildings caught my eye, although I had been down this way many times before, I was today seeing it as a stranger for the first time, and was beheld by it’s beauty! Even more wondrous sights were to fall in front of our eyes as the evening drew in, we climbed toward Cleddon bog, the climb is long but not hard and we quickly reached Ninewells wood. We then entered that other world which does not belong in reality, but lends it self more to J.R.R.Tolkien, we cycled through the wood on a secret lane only known to privileged few. It was now getting dark, the birds were singing in the trees and it felt like spring had arrived. We left that world as quickly as we had entered it, we then took the lane to Trellech Cross and on to Llanishen, it was not long before we descended the Star pitch to Llansoy, my 10 watt Vistalite blazing, we quickly hit Usk. From here we took the 'Traditional' route home via Prescoed , Coed y Paen and Treherbert road , we both punctured on this last stretch, we thought we might get caught in the rain but thankfully it held off, to allow us to get back to Croesyceiliog at 8.30pm , it had been a great evening out and was a good appetizer of things to come!..43 miles.

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