Man oh man. What a day.
So, our penultimate ride. 50 or so miles straight up to the north coast of Scotland. I was expecting it to be rather bleak, and a bit dull.
We kicked off a bit late, with a forecast that was nothing but grey clouds and heavy rain. We made it as far as the Falls of Shin, about half an hour out from the hotel, before the downpour began.
Fortunately we were planning a stop there anyway, to plunder their free wi-fi.
We hung out there for an hour. The rain didn’t stop. But it did weaken, and given the forecast, we figured we might as well get on with it.
We continued north, still following National Cycle Route 1, up into the Highlands proper. It’s a simply breathtaking journey, and we found ourselves stopping constantly to take photos. The light changed moment by moment, and each new turn, each new hill revealed another stunning panorama.
We managed to keep just ahead of the threatened rain, which was fantastically lucky. We could clearly see how it would be an entirely different journey if you were riding through rain, or didn’t have the wind at your back as we did. There’s hardly any shelter, so you’re wildly exposed.
We stopped at the solitary Crask Inn for a lovely lunch of toasted sandwiches, and then cracked on northwards, mindful that the weather could turn any moment.
Incredibly, the journey carried on becoming more and more impressive, with a glorious downhill as we approached the beautiful Loch Loyal. And as we arrived there… a tiny shower which produced another stunning rainbow:
A brilliant day, one that yet again showed us just what a beautiful island this is.