Ladies weekend in the Cotswolds

Discovering the Cotswolds with our friends from C-CAM

With the early May bank holiday behind us, three of CambsIAM’s female members took off to the Cotswolds for a three-day biking adventure. We based ourselves in Chipping Norton, where we found we’d been blessed with good sunny weather, albeit chilly in the morning

For the departure we had chosen to rendez-vous at Hardwick, lunchtime on Friday. When bikes & bikers were finally ready for departure we set off on our route west, first following small country roads. After a stint on the A421 we entered the land of yellow stone buildings clad with wisteria, winding our way through pretty villages such as Aynho, Clifton & Dennington before a late afternoon arrival at Chipping Norton

On Saturday morning grey skies gradually gave way to sunny spells. Five members of C-CAM (Cheltenham and Cotswolds IAM) met us in the car park of our hotel to take us on a magical mystery tour of impossibly picturesque Cotswolds villages such as the delightful Upper & Lower Slaughter. The C-CAM team led us 110 miles up hill and down dale, on B-roads and green lanes (yes, with grass in the middle), unexpected hairpins and challenging uphill junctions complete with gravel and potholes. Were we actually on a test ride? Never mind… we were rewarded with the most delicious ice-cream at the Chedworth Farm Shop, where the views over the Welsh mountains in the distance were breathtaking

We are most grateful to Graham and James who led and tail-ended this group ride very safely. Without their local knowledge, we could never have put together such a comprehensive, challenging and ultimately rewarding itinerary of this beautiful region

On Sunday we devised our own tour, a 120-mile loop taking in Stow-on-the-Wold, Bourton-on-the-Water, North Cerney, Burford, Chipping Campden & Moreton-in-the-Marsh on sweeping, undulating roads, with a nice lunch in the sunny courtyard at The Swan Inn near Lechlade-on-Thames

After breakfast on Monday morning it was time for the journey home, after a mile-packed weekend! We greatly enjoyed our trip, and hope we can entice a few more ladies along when we next embark on a similar adventure