Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Engage low gear and GO!

This is Tuesday evening's Blog, covering the ride from Durness to Scourie. There was no Internet connection at Scourie.

By 10 this morning the sun had made a few sporadic appearances and the wind didn't seem quite as strong as it had been during the night. Tents and camper vans had a light coating of volcanic dust and you could taste it in the air. Time to move on.

The daunting prospect of a 600 ft climb out of the Kyle of Durness was ameliorated by the lure of a pint at the Rhiconich Hotel, 17 miles away. It took nearly three hours to get there, having had to stop three times when there were squalls of rain and hail. The first time I managed to shelter in a roadside culvert; the second under a gorse bush, but the third time I just got cold and wet! That stretch of moorland is very exposed.

After the promised pint I continued via Laxford Bridge (left) to Scourie. Although it was only 3 pm when I arrived there, I decided to call a halt as the wind had become decidedly stronger. At one point, whilst on level ground, the wind literally stopped me in my tracks. Mostly today the wind has been in my face, which whilst arduous, is OK. It's when the wind is coming at me from 90 degrees that I have to be careful.

Scourie has a beautiful bay (and a tiny harbour), as the photos on Facebook will show.

I'm now well behind schedule, but will miss out a loop section tomorrow (Achiltibuie, Old Dornie and Reiff) and aim for Ullapool where the best-ever takeaway fish and chips are sold. That should place me exactly one day behind the planned route.

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