Well we have to begin with news of the dinner from the evening before and tell you what delights we ate. Craig took his trip to the local kebab shop and return with the biggest bag you can imagine.
And when we put it all together with the handmade, chicken bake pasta that someone called Mr Asda made for us this is what we enjoyed!
And then a Mr Corona lent us some packaging so that we could innovate and watch the England game….we did so, quite literally on the box!
Anyway the night passed very comfortably and we all got a great nights sleep. Only point of note: Craig will look in Boots today to see if we can buy some special Deet to deter the bloke who comes into the RV each morning to practice the trombone!!
This morning a hero within the RV came to the fore. When you see the next photo, those of you with any inkling of experience of camping will know immediately why Alan became the main man this morning!
Before we left, we met another hero. Pete, who manages the campsite, helped us affix the other decal to the back of the RV with a pallet and tiewraps. Cheers Pete!!
And so the day began, in front of us we had calculated more than 65 miles and 3600ft of climb across the Cairngorms. We fuelled up, got prepared and set off for what we all thought was going to be the toughest day yet.
And we weren’t disappointed. The first 5 miles were a very long uphill drag until we got to Tore on the way to Inverness. It was one of Alan’s ‘liveners’ again!
It got even more interesting when we ran into diverted traffic signs before Inverness. We were diverted right down to the sea level knowing that we had to anyhow get over the bridge over the Inverness Firth. And that bridge was towering over us.
You guessed it…..a very steep hill to get us under the bridge and then back up to the cycle lane on the opposite side to where we wanted to be! Anyway, we overcame that challenge and here are some pics.
Our troubles were not yet over. On the other side of the bridge, we had no option but to join the A9 for 1 mile before we could pick up the bike track to Culloden. It was like cycling on the motorway! Pretty scary, but we got to the right path in the end….or so we thought.
Then our Garmin decided that we weren’t following its instructions and started to play up! So we relied on the locals who pretty much directed us to the rendezvous with Craig and the RV. Funnily enough…we approached him from the opposite direction that he was expecting! What an interesting first section and what should have been 18 miles had turned into 20 already!
After the stop at Culloden the fun really started. We were on the road to pass through Tomatin and reach our personal summit target at Slochd. Nothing much to say about that other than we battled through 2 hours of constant climbing. But we made it… 😊
It was great for Alan and Thomas that Craig was able to capture the moment of triumph. It was sweet!
We then enjoyed a fabulous downhill run into Aviemore where Craig was waiting for us with refreshments.
From there we had to put on our waterproofs because the weather had turned a little showery but nothing too bad.
So, you remember the special photo from Day#1 of the ride? Here’s the second one.
Keep thinking guys. What could this mean and where might we go next??
We finally rolled into Kingussie at around 5:45pm this evening and Alan took the opportunity to share with you just what an amazing journey this has been.
We arrived at our destination this evening at almost 6:00pm exactly, having set out at 9:30am today. It was a long day but we all feel exhilarated. It was a great feeling to cross the Cairngorms and do it on such a good weather day overall.
Tonight we are staying in a truck stop at the side of the A9.
For those of you who have seen Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, you won’t be surprised that we are all fearing meeting Large Marge this evening!!!
If you haven’t seen the clip, have fun finding it on YouTube!! 😊
So we are all cleaned up, ready for our roadside diner dinner that we are all sure will be an experience! 😊
Once again thanks for all your support and donations. We couldn’t do this without you all.
Signing off now. More news tomorrow…