Och, what a Beautiful Day!

29 05 2009

Our spirits lifted from the perfect morning we’d woken up to we set off on the loch singletrackfantastic little singletrack that ran alongside the Loch. It was just plain beautiful, we were definitely having a true Highland adventure. The singletrack hugged the Loch for quite a while until it eventually became too boulder-strewn to ride. Not to be defeated though, Rick still had a go and unsurprisingly ground out the trailer …which had us in stitches.

lochside bikeQuick photo stop on the sandy beach at the Loch head (where does this sand come from?) and a bit of fun trying to ride in it, and we were heading “round the mountain when we come, singing aye aye yippie yippie aye” – it had to be done at some point didn’t it? Rick was convinced he saw a Golden Eagle, yes dear if you say so! then round the corner the head wind disappeared so a quick munch stop to fuel the climb to follow.

It was now fireroad all the way, with a 400mtr mountain climb of the Corrour to undertake, ‘spin it to win it’ was my climbing mantra while stompy and stampy headed off into the distance (you know who you are!). Gradient wasn’t bad today though and the fireroad was in great nick with the trees giving lovely shelter from the wind and rain. It wasn’t cold so we just got our heads down and climbed at our own pace. Nearing the top we started being overtaken by the World Championship 6 Day Trial Race (clicky link: http://www.ssdt.org/) as they blasted round their mountain stage.

Stopping for McMash; a homely combination of smash potato and tinned haggis (only in Scotland) made up with boiled stream water, behind the tarp mcmashwe body hugged to keep warm from the now sideways rain. McMash did the trick. So with stomachs fuelled and heads down we ventured out into the open moorland and a biting headwind.  The friendly waves from the bikers kept our spirits up as we climbed and meandered our way round the mountain, no tree cover to protect us now, it was hard work into the headwind.

Eventually dropping back to Loch level we were out of the wind so re-grouping for another quick munch and exchanging our thoughts on the weather we decided to keep going before we chilled down, we were now soaked to the skin. Plugging away, heads down, it eventually appeared. Our salvation.

A beautiful little wooden hut on the edge of the Loch, as remote as remote can be. Previously a steamship waiting station for wealthy Victorians hunting and fishing on the Loch, it was now our mission to get there as quick as hostelpossible. Gradually reeling it in you have no idea how glad we were to arrive. The 50mph headwind and driving rain doing its best to defeat us, not today though we were determined.

Compost toilets and no showers, who cares, there was a fire roaring, friendly folk to put the kettle on and a nice warm bed. What more could we want ? flingWe had a great night in the hostel but the next day’s ‘funky’ weather forecast definitely got us talking about ‘options’ for tomorrow…Lisa

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