Monday 20th August 2012 – Day 8

Inbetween Buckie and Portgordon – Rosemakie

81.25 miles

1859 feet of climbing

13.95 mph/average

3,391 calories burnt

We all had an early rise this morning at 6:30am, I got up and started to unlock the bikes, Harry got the breakfast going.  Another amazing view to wake up and eat breakfast in front of, looking out on the North Sea, we even managed to spot the seals of Portgordon.

Dad and I set off at 8:30am, we had to head south west as opposed to directly west to cross a river at Fochabers. It’s always tough heading out of your way because as you’re doing it, you’re always thinking about how little progress you are making along the coast! Saying that Dad and I are settling into a routine with cycling, I take the lead because I have the Garmin, and Dad tucks in behind.

We bombed along and hit Lossiemouth 20 miles from breakfast, we stopped and had a banana and pit stop.  The weather was glorious so we stayed a little while to take some photo’s (which when we have more internet I will put up!).

Out of Lossiemouth, we took the coastal road which was far too busy for us to enjoy. We did notice a lot of golf courses though, around Hopeman and Burghead. We started heading south and inland abit, down to Kinloss, where the army/RAF base is, apparently my Uncle was based there for a while, so again we stopped to take a couple of quick photos.

Harry and Mum were stopped just outside of Forres, it was a struggle to find them this time as they were out of the town and down a small country road. It’s always quite fraught when we’re trying to meet up with the motorhome as one, my Garmin is not detailed enough, two – we’re hungry and three – sometimes the directions we’re given are not the most accurate ;-).

Over lunch (burgers!) we decided to push on over the afternoon and do another 40 miles. As the weather was good we really wanted to make the most of it! Near Inshoch Wood we went through a Christmas tree farm, and then in Lochloy Wood, we cycled past a couple of wee highland coo’s – although I think I made one hyperventilate by taking photo’s.

We then whizzed through Nairn, and along the coast to Fort George on an old military road. After cycling behind Inverness airport we passed a beautiful Castle called Castle Stuart and even more golf courses. All the while we had beautiful views of Kessock Bridge and the Black Isle where we would be staying.

Before we crossed Kessock Bridge, we had to join the A96, 5 miles out of Inverness.  It’s never nice cycling along a major road, but as we are doing alot of our riding during the day when most are at work it is not too bad. To cross Kessock Bridge we then had to join the A9, but this time there was a cycle path, albeit a bit hidden that we could use.  As with the Forth and Tay Bridge it was rather windy, but probably the nicest bridge crossing we’ve had so far.

Once over the A9 Kessock Bridge, we started heading East, and after 10 short miles we were at our rest stop for the evening, Fortrose and Rosemarkie camp site.

Home for the night has a wonderful view of Moray Firth where we can see the walled Fort George and the coast that we cycled along earlier today. Harry AGAIN cooked up a storm, creme fraiche pasta with bacon (but no peas as apparently Gavin and Pat forgot to buy them when they were here – I don’t know, these part time campers!)

Off to bed soon – trying to get some more miles in the bank tomorrow as it looks like rain at the end of the week.

If anyone is wondering how the legs are holding up – to be honest as we’re doing anywhere between 50 – 95 miles a day they don’t feel that bad. Now we’re over a week in, they’ve settled in to a routine. Only one niggle and thats a twinge on the outside of my right knee – thinking of which way I need to move my cleat, any ideas – give me an email!

2 thoughts on “Monday 20th August 2012 – Day 8

  1. Just checked out your progress to date following my earlier correspondence with Stephen — very impressive so far! Enjoy Cromarty and Dornoch tomorrow… before you get to enjoy Helmsdale and Berriedale 😐
    ps. hope the Cromarty-Nigg ferry is running for you — it wasn’t for us!

  2. It’s great that everything is going so well.
    Can’t believe it’s a week already.
    I’m also following this to see what’s on your menu everyday 🙂

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