And so it continues.
An early start for a Sunday morning at the University of Lincoln Graduate School, a place more accustomed to student habits, and we set off to head up the hill to the cathedral for a photo opportunity sans Morris dancers.
I did feel a little unholy, gathering by the doors to the looming landmark while other more sombre groups scurried through them.
Then we were off, back down the hill and Northwards up the B1398 towards Scunthorpe, a green landscape sullied only by cooling towers.
It was lovely and quiet until we got to Scunthorpe, where a stretch on the A18 (aptly named Mortal Ash Hill) chilled us to the bone. Riding in two pairs at that point, Stacy and I joined the carriageway behind an older guy riding a tourer with panniers. If he could do it, we could.
“Pedal like hell!” I yelled into the wind as we cranked up the pace and tucked in to the side. Soon we were spared by a roundabout and a usefully placed Morrisons where we correctly anticipated the van would be waiting.
We carefully negotiated the outskirts of the city before the landscape opened up once more. This time we hit a series of wind farms, which, it turns out, are rather difficult to cycle through. A number of miles of headwind later, and we entered my home territory, the historical West Riding of Yorkshire.
Wobbling over a strange cycle path over a swamp, we then stopped for a classy lunch on the side of the road by a Co-operative supermarket just before Goole. With 25 miles to go, we’d done almost 2/3 of the day.
The final stretch was riddled with quaint little villages and winding roads, the surfaces of which became progressively more uneven as we traveled North.
Stacy’s mascot even had time for a spot of navigation.
Finally, after what felt like forever, we arrived in York. Only a few laps of the student village to go before we checked in.
Thank you especially to Jo Hilton-Scott of York Conferences for furnishing us with a generous discount and somewhere to sleep (for us and the bikes).