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Autumn open top drive to Bolton Abbey

A great day for an autumn open top drive. The sun was out. The roads were dry. You have to take the chance on a good day to get the roof off and indulge in an autumn open top drive. We chose the quieter back roads through to Ilkley, and then on to Bolton Abbey for lunch at the Devonshire Arms, captured in this map.

Views from the quiet side of the Wharfe

Stay on the quiet side of the River Wharfe and you are rewarded with fantastic views. The Morgan Plus4 has no driver aids of any description. It most definitely does not have satellite navigation. We are therefore navigating by such quaint methods as reading road signs and remembering which minor roads take you where.

The first big view comes at the top of Kearby cliff with this stunning view down the Wharfe valley.

Morgan Plus 4 on a beautiful Autumn day in Yorkshire

Autumn in the Wharfe ValleyWe skirted around the edge of Otley, and headed up to Weston. All the time keeping to the north of the Wharfe means that we avoid the A65. As the main road down the Wharfe Valley it gets busy and clogged up. Beats me why we had the quiet roads pretty much to ourselves. Plenty of time to stop and admire the view, and the Autumn colours.

Morgan Plus4 at Weston village

This picture sums up a great drive out to Ilkley. Not another car in sight. Trees turning to their finest showing of autumn colours. The kind of classic day the car was made for.

Approaching Ilkley among the Autumn colours

Bolton Abbey

We stopped for lunch at the Brasserie at the Bolton Arms.  This was fine as far as it went, but somehow lacked a bit of atmosphere. I’ll try the Abbey Tea Rooms next time, directly opposite and a firm favourite when on a bike ride over in these parts. Some fabulous views as these photos show.

The view from the Devonshire Arms

The Road to Bolton Abbey

Archway across the road to Bolton Abbey

Quick slow road back to Boston Spa

We were running short of time after lunch, so opted to blast back down the A65 and other major roads. Big mistake. Lots of hanging around getting through traffic lights in Ilkley, Otley, Pool and Harewood. Grinding along with the commuters was my penalty for ignoring my own advice and taking the roads to the south of the river.

Still, lesson learnt for next time. Here’s hoping that the weather gods smile on us and give us another Autumn open top drive day before the winter weather kicks in.

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