kipperfish: (Alyson)
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Land's End to John O'Groats Day 10 - Moffat to Kinross 80 miles (683 miles done, 303 miles to go)

After last nights shenanigans with the smoke alarm, we awoke to a damp Moffat, with a rather cheery lady serving us breakfast. I've never heard of the concept of breakfast having different courses before, but there I was being asked if I wanted any starters (cereals) before I had my main course (a cooked breakfast). I just lump it all in as breakfast as thinking at that time of the morning is hard!

What's also hard are wakey wakey climbs, and today, we had another one. Actually, I'm doing today's a disservice. It was about the nicest wakey wakey climb we could have. It was long, but the gradient was so shallow that you could find a nice gear, sit in it, and just work your way through the miles. It also rewarded us with a fantastic downhill to Brew stop so all in all, one of the best wakey wakey climbs of the tour! I should add that the views at the top were spectacular. Well, I'm told they would have been spectacular, had we not been in the middle of a fog bank! As it was, I could see just past the other side of the road....

At brew stop, I wowed everyone with my hornpipe dance, at least that's what everyone else called it. I called it my "Yahgeroffoutofityoubastard" dance as I though a wasp was buzzing around my legs. I must admit I was a bit mean to my bike at this point. I had been faffing round it when a wasp turned up, and I simply let go and ran away, leaving the bike to the mercy of the yellow and black stripey devil. Happily, it managed a good dodge by falling over onto its gears, and even better, didn't damage itself in the process! My bike is awesome!

Edinburgh was navigated - I got lost once, well sort of anyway. We took a wrong turning or two before we made it out of the other side, and then there was the Forth Road Bridge. Yeah. Not cycling over that one again either. Unlike the Severn Bridge, I've double and triple checked my bucket list, and this one most definitely isn't on there, and with good reason! Not only is it falling apart, which is why they are building a new one, but as you go across the cycle path on it, there are gaps you can see through to the river below! Frankly, one of my worst nightmares! Apparently, I have one more suspension bridge to negotiate. On the plus side, brew stop was pretty much straight after the bridge, so I was able to recover with that good old english staple, the cup of tea.

After Edinburgh, it was full steam ahead to Kinross, with some "lumpy" roads. It says something that these lumpy bits don't actually feel that bad anymore. I'm sure some of the ones today were akin to the ones we were doing in Devon and Cornwall, and we were all swearing at and stressing over them when we were down south, now we are simply going "oh look, another one" and just getting on with it.

There is one thing we aren't getting on with though, and that is the road surface. Seriously Scotland, what's up with that? What do you use for Tarmac replacements? Most of the roads we rode along today shook us to the very core, and quite possibly would have given several adult toys a good run for their money such was the amount of vibrations we received! I'm beginning to wonder if Scotland cultivates some form of Stone Porridge which it uses to put down instead of Tarmac on the road surfaces! It would certainly explain many things.

We had two bike casualties today, and one rider casualty. Thankfully, the sling Dennis wore at lunch was just a precaution for a bruised shoulder suffered when he decided he didn't want to cycle down the road anymore, but wanted to try out as a bowling ball instead. The two bike casualties were both the same problem - they didn't want one of their spokes, so they have both had to be persuaded to stop throwing spokes out of the rim (which I assume is the bike equivalent of throwing toys out of the pram) and to play nicely.

So, all in all, a good, but tiring day, having covered 80 miles. The best news however came in the hotel room. It has a bath! Somewhere to soak the tired legs in hot water at the end of the day. Definitely worth it!

Still not in John O'Groats yet.


April 2017

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