Hi guys, well a blog wouldn’t be quite right if we didn’t finish off the story from last evenings dinner.
I am pleased to say that we didn’t meet Large Marge as feared…she was conspicuous by her absence. 😊
Actually, even the owners dog wasn’t interested in us!
But they were great hosts and the diner proved to be a welcome oasis after the pressure of the Cairngorms.
We settled down for fish pie, sirloin steak and a juggernaut burger all of which were washed down by cold Tennent’s lager. It’s fair to say that they didn’t touch the sides!
The footy was on the TV and we met some great local truckers who were good company and very supportive of our efforts.
Last minute phone calls were made home with this amazing backdrop behind us and then all of the team had a very good nights sleep.
The team is disappointed to report that the Deet for the trombone player did not work so the morning began at 5:57am in the traditional way!
Breakfast and tablets were consumed and taken, the bikes prepped, kit was put on and at 8:30am the day began with an 18 mile flat ride to the first checkpoint.
After 15 minutes, we met the first challenge and opportunity for humour. Thomas swallowed a fly which he swears was carrying a full rucksack and copious amounts of coughing and spluttering were required to get rid of the offending insect. Alan could not resist the photo opp.
Once again the famous ‘Alan livener’ made its presence known early in the day. When we got out into some open track in what was basically a gulley between two mountains, we faced 13 miles of strong headwinds over an undulating terrain. Scotland always giving us surprises!
It was a pleasant surprise to pass in front of the Dalwhinnie Distillery even if we couldn’t actually visit.
The last two miles to the checkpoint were like gravel tracks and were quite unforgiving to ride on. Craig caught the riders arriving at the checkpoint.
The next part of the ride was the drop down to Pitlochry and our next checkpoint. It was an exhilarating reward for the previous day. We calculated that we actually free-wheeled for c.10 miles! We really enjoyed it! Though we did stop at Blair Castle for a quick snap.
Onwards to Pitlochry and the rain was beginning to spit even before we arrived in the town centre. What a really nice town! Definitely one to properly visit in the future.
Out of Pitlochry, and the rain really decided to come down. Alan and Thomas were both well-protected but they soon became pretty soaked.
We did however take some pics on the way. The first one is special photo number#3. We know that some of you are already working it out. But where will we go next?
We have seen some interesting bridges among other things on this trip and here’s another that we crossed.
Alan in his ‘They shall not pass’ mode 😊
And here’s the explanation of how the Tay Viaduct came to be.
By the time we got to our last checkpoint at Dunkeld the heavens really had opened but still we saw some fabulous sites and views. Some wildlife…lots and lots of sheep…go figure…and one very proud ‘Foghorn Leghorn’ who did his best to intimidate us!
And then Alan took a great video showing the River Tay in all its glory. A fabulous ride on a bike track running through some amazing landscapes.
As ever when it comes to our navigation there is always a sting in the tail. And today was no different.
When we were approaching Perth and only 6 miles away, we met the dreaded roadworks and diversions again. We couldn’t figure out exactly which way to go in the Perthshire countryside. And once again we threw ourselves at the mercy of the locals, whether they be construction workers or residents. And once again they came through for us. As we finally pulled up at the rendezvous with Craig, (we had to meet him in the town and transfer to the camp in the RV), we took a count of what our diversions had caused us.
We had set out this morning knowing that the perfect journey would have been c.66 miles. We checked our Garmin as we loaded the bikes on the back of the RV and we were at 71 miles. Our diversion had cost us a mere 5 miles!! 😊
Hey ho….we got here in the end….
Once again thanks for all your support and donations. We couldn’t do this without you all.
Signing off now. More news tomorrow…