This 50+ mile route passes through long stretches of open countryside and many picturesque villages. The route has some moderate climbing but equally there are many stretches of very pleasant undulating quiet roads.
This ride starts close to the banks of the River Ribble and almost immediately leaving the car park we join the Preston Guild Wheel route as it passes Avenham Park. We stay alongside the Ribble for the next 3½ miles before leaving the river and staying with the Guild Wheel route until Lea Lane after approx. 6 miles.
From here we are in open countryside passing through the communities of Catforth, Eaves and Inskip. Great Eccleston quickly follows and on previous rides has provided a welcome coffee and toilet stop. After leaving Great Eccleston we encounter the Catford Toll Bridge as we cross the River Wyre, free for pedestrians but cyclists have to pay 20 pence. The route then follows Lancaster Road, Skitham Lane and Longmoor Lane through Nateby before turning left into Nateby Crossing Lane.
Heading north the route diverts via Ford Green before re-joining Park Lane, turning right at the T junction into Ratcliffe Wharfe Lane. We take care crossing the busy A6 (Preston Lancaster Road) into Hollins Lane for the very pleasant run past Cleveleymere Lake before the crossing M6 motorway bridge and the downhill run into Scorton village. At 30 miles this will be the stopping point for our lunch break.
After leaving Scorton the route follows National Cycle Network – Route 6 and is well signposted for the remainder of the route. It passes through the villages of Inglewhite, Goosnargh, and Whittingham before turning back on itself along Haighton Green Lane to re-join the Guild Wheel route just south of Broughton. The route continues to follows the NCN Route 6 into Preston City Centre, leading to Avenham Park and finally our start point at Frenchwood Recreation Ground car park.
Refreshment: There are numerous pubs and restaurants in many of the villages we pass through but it is planned to have a coffee/toilet stop in Great Eccleston and then a lunch break in Scorton.
Jim T will be leading on this one. It should be a grand day out. Thelma, Steve, Ray & Joyce are joining him, will you?