Now everything about today’s ride would have pleased my son. From starting in the rain in Manchester to the sites visited topped off with finding a McLaren showroom and Kimi Raikonnen’s F1 car.
I woke up with no ill effects left by the flu so it promised to be a good day on the bike. I was not going to let a bit of rain spoil a good ride.
We headed towards the city centre and then onto the Ashton Canal at the Etihad Stadium of the “sky blues” Mancester City football team. Easier said than done mind you as we found it quite difficult to negotiate the trip from one side of the city to the other as mostly there were no signs indicating direction and many tributaries. We passed many of the old buildings and got the view the traders had when a lot of the businesses were thriving.
One building in particular that impressed me was the original cotton mill. I do not have to much info on this trade but my interest has been pricked and I intend researching the history. Judging by the size of the building it must have been a big business.
Soon we joined the Bridgewater Canal and this took us to the most famous Manchester United stronghold of Old Trafford.
Unfortunately we were too early for a tour at £20 so I settled for a visit to the Red Cafe and as much as I could see before they opened. As we were leaving a bus load of Chinese supporters arrived in the car park – at least 60 people I would guess just to prove how popular this club is worldwide.
Back onto the towpath and the miles flew by. We only stopped once for tea served from a long boat before we finally left the towpath at Altrincham to head for Knutsford.
This proved tricky as the roads were being turned into highways and we had to dodge the cars through a new intersection not on our map with no pathway for cycles yet. It was a little hary at times as we ran our bikes through the traffic. We finally got onto the minor road again and began winding our way towards Knutsford passed some huge country estates were you could tell the wealthy owned property as we were passed by Ferrari and Lotus sports cars. In Knutsford we found a McLaren showroom with the actual race car used by Kimi Raikonnen and an original staging post called the White Bear.
From Knutsford we headed for our destination, Nantwich. We traveled past many little villages that were having the church fête’s and stopped for tea and cake or just a look around the stalls. Each had a different theme and one I enjoyed most was the steam tractors at Byley.
After a good day in the saddle with good health one learns to be grateful for the things that seem insignificant until you do not have them.
Tomorrow we head into Wales and the Clun Valley through the Brecon Beacons to Cardiff.
Eugene on a bike somewhere in the world