Well, It turned out to be a very wet and hard day's ride for me. I met up with two friends at the station. Started out and headed up the hill which started straight away. I was a bit breathless for the first quarter mile as there is no warm up time, after that all was well. The climb itself is not difficult even a couple of downhill bits. At the pub we stopped for a photo, and whilst there the rain came in. and lasted about 20 minutes and soaked the road so the ride down into Buxton was very wet and we were all soaked by the time we got to the bottom, it would be an excellent descent when dry. I was originally going to ride on from there to my parents house, but decided to go back up and over to Macclesfield. Again the rain came in again and stayed on the descent, when we had to turn into the wind it was the pins in the face, very uncomfortable! Just before the descent into the town there is a 10% sign, it is definitely not 10% because it is too easy to ride up. The rain then started to really hammer down, I was soaked through to the skin by the time I reached town and we decided to sit it out in a cafe! About 40 minutes later it eased up. But was still raining. One of us went home and 2 of us went back up the climb. A quarter of a mile up I realized I had left my bladder behind so back down to the cafe to retrieve it!! Onwards and upwards again, a little harder for me this time! At Buxton my friend went back over the hill to Macclesfield to his car. I had looked at the AA road map and decided to go from from Buxton, heading south via Longnor, Frogshall, Cheadle, Hilderstone, Sandon and onto Little Haywood. The AA book did show 2 chevrons on one section of road so I expected a couple of sharp inclines! However, it turned out to be a killer! it was up and down all the way to Hilderstone, and the hills were just that little bit too far away to benefit from the downhill. it really became a chore struggling up them. I even had to use my granny gear which was still hard work.(I may need lower gears for the Etape!) There were steeper bits on the route than the bit with the chevrons!! On the up side there was no more rain and at times the sun was shining and the Skylarks were singing. The countryside was beautiful, but a riders nightmare! On one steep incline in the middle of nowhere, there were traffic lights at the top as it went single track. It was still red when I got to it, but I wasn't going to stop!! Eventually I got to the A51 and a bit of flat, it was bliss!! 18, 19 miles an hour all the way to Ma & Pa's and legs spinning nicely for the first time all day. 78 miles in all. A very very hard days riding for me.