Coed Brenin Enduro 2014

Coed Brenin Enduro 2014

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

The Burma road (Cairngorms)

I've always avoided Scotland in summer because of the wee beasty midges, but Sheddy had been tasked with finding an adventure for us all this August and we had decided to go to Skye for the Cuillin Ridge. Unfortunately the weather forecast for Skye was rubbish so we decided that we needed a change of plan so headed East to the Cairngorms when I picked up the marauding Southerners from Glasgow airport.

The start of the Burma Road

Nice steady start
Sheddy and Tom are both quite soft being from the South (!) so I had to ease them in gently. They hired mt bikes for 3 days and I brought my own.

A quick photo stop....

Nearly at the top, clouds brewing up
Wow the midges were bad and we found ourselves sitting in my car at 4pm not daring to venture out as every time we did we got eaten alive. The sign in the campsite reception stated 'no refund due to midges or rain'. That should have been all of the warning we needed to move on...

I'll mention now that Tom had brought the mid with him, a great 3-4 person bivy/tent. I think I'd asked him if he was bringing a proper inner with bug netting, and I'm sure he said he was. Unfortunately it had a floor, but no netting, so basically it was a teepee with a gap all the way around the base allowing high midge flow levels to enter and exit as required (mainly enter and bite!). Therefore I tried to sleep in the car whilst they fought for their lives in the bug tent.

chilling in the bothy

Shed on the storm

beautiful heather and trails
We headed out on the famous Burma road for our first trip. Its a local iconic ride that I've wanted to do for years and starts by going up a very steep hill until you get to 700m. The climb was great, I'd thought it was a push, but it was all rideable, although I stopped a few times to take pictures.

the savanna

The cloud bubbled in and we got soaked dropping down into the beautiful glen on the other side of the pass. We took shelter in a nice red roofed bothy before the sun came out and we continued on.

mile marker

Tom and hare bells
It's a beautiful ride and the river dulnain valley was amazing with the heather in bloom and sun shining. We eventually joined General Wades old Military Road which took us back to civilisation at Carrbridge.

amazing bridge on General Wades Highway

From here we got a little lost but eventually found a series of off route cycleways to get us back to Aviemore. A brilliant ride that ended up being about 35 miles. I think the boys enjoyed it, just another midday night to endure now....

Nearly home


Awaiting the midge attack to begin...

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