Another Roadtrip Disaster

This time we were aiming for Knoydart and we ended up in Torridon. Turned out all right in the end though:

Then we just kind of stayed there. Dave 'Pleasuredome' Waugh in action

I badgered Dave to get set of ASAP after work and we promptly got stuck for an hour on a closed M6. Dave contemplates what he could have achieved in an extra hour on No Fear Downhill, the greatest computer game of all time.

Hours later and we hit the shores of Loch Lomond. Dense midge clouds covered the road, and the odd stray deer kept concentration levels up.

This seemed like a good idea at the time. With hindsight it was one of the worst camp locations I have ever known.

The crap camp site did mean we where in the mountains above Kinlochleven by 8 o'clock the next morning though.

Almost worth it. This was the nicest weather I have ever known in Scotland

Across the dam then back down the other side. Third attempt at riding this bit of the trail and the first time we have got to the trailhead.

It started of really quite well. Loose rocks on the open hillside.

Singletrackin' into the woods

The trail alternated between steep and gnarly...

..and pedal heavy flowing bits.

Slabs ahoy

This was the last steep bit before things got flatter, and fairly knackering heading into the back of Kinlochleven.

And so off to Torridon. You've read the mags, you know why we went there. We went there without Dave's helmet mind.

Dave spent the first evening hiking and soul-searching. Having missed out on Torridonian trails once before, I headed out. As usual, Sarah saved our trip, and probably our sanity. The phone call saying helmets could be hired in Lochcarron came through that evening.

Canoe helmets that is. Dave's noggin safety cocoon in a layer of plastic, we headed of into the mountains. Bothy adds to the feel.

The climb continued. This was still early on in what turned into a bit of an epic.

And then the descent began. Seriously. Good. From the Dutch couple at the top, the only people we saw all day, telling us they reckoned it was an hour downhill to the pub, to slabs with the sea stretching away into the distance. Pedally but awesome. The early part defines high-postin' XC riding as far as I was concerned. The lower bit is ace.

Stopped at pub, span up the road for a bit, and found this sweet little trail. Felt like classic Scottish XC to me, tiny trail alongside a deer fence, with a big old bog at the bottom. Most excellent.

Then we climbed back over to the Achnasellach valley on this trail here.

It where a bit good.

We pretty much rode up and back down the whole thing it was so good, in both directions

Sometimes on a ride, I have a 'This is exactly how mountain biking looks in my head' moment.

So good.
So very, very good. It just keeps getting better...

...and then it ends. One hell of a 55km ride. The only thing that could have made this day any better was watching England play out a dour 0-0 draw with Algeria. Oh wait.

Another day, another trail. Or the same trail again, with some extra bits.

Trail center innovation right there.

We gave up on any ambitous plans early on, and decided to see if we could make the ridge and ride a snake like trail we had seen the day before.

Slippy as all hell. Photogenic mind. Dave and the Pleasuredome become one.

Or not. We made the ridge. It was good.

Don't think you could get much fresher than this.

The trail was a beauty. What did you expect. Almost Alpine.

The view from the col. A lap of that mountain is in order next time I think.

And then we went back down. Pinch flats where imminent.

Slab-berm-wall-ride action. The trail had it all.

Including a super sweet tea shop at the bottom. The cakes where damn fine.

We got some decent footy in the bag aswell. Stay tuned for news on that. Dave harvests a last nug before the drive south.

It's like art man.

Roadkillin' Four days, and 1000kms or so of dead midge.

I really wanted to say Glentress was ace. The whole trail centres are rubbish thing seems ridiculous to me. Having said that the Black run and Skills area didn't really do it for me.

It was good, but I couldn't escape the feeling that Gwydyr, Coed-y-Brenin and Laggan all have better trails. Its all bicycles & fun at the end of the day though.

Ballbag dreaming of...

...this. Desk bound and wishing I was back. 

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