Day 13 - Penultimate, glorious, Highlands
Updated: Jul 26
The boys nailed 120km. Only 100km to go. Awesome achievement. We are all so very proud of them. Happy; tired; enthusiastic; eager to get to the finish.
Thanks for a great evening c/o Palmers. Legendary bar-b-q. The weather can only be described as Scottish when waking, soaking, fortunately changed by the time the boys got up and all things looked great for the penultimate day. Quick fuel of muesli and back to the Kessick Bridge to start the day.
All off led by Issy across the bridge, who was quickly overtaken. The whole day was a challenge as a NW wind blew hard into their faces. Enthusiasm did not waver and upwards they went.
Through the day were energy sapping hills, gradual long climbs which were brutal; beautiful scenery; a pub in the middle of nowhere on a random hill, been looking for one for days and here it was wrong place, wrong time; Freddie had a couple of chats with a Mini driver on the single track roads; worse was a smelly use of the loo only to find it was the ladies and there was a queue outside; it is deserted here, little traffic and stunning; kms along one moors and kms around lochs. Issy was on bridges. First was Kessick Bridge out of Inverness. She got back in the bus and second up was Cromarty Bridge meeting the boys in the middle. Next was Dornoch Bridge and put that one on the list. I think that’s all the major bridges under her belt.
We met the boys somewhat exhausted at Bonar Bridge. The strong headwind was there all day. They valiantly fought it. The Highlands are awesome. Did you know places marked on the map here seem to be one house, not the villages expected? Carried on the A836, no signs to tell us it was single track. Memories of Devon.
Went to Tain, not as good as they say it is, and bump into The Great Ride. Robert Millar, famous Scottish cyclist and Tour de France presenter was passing. We missed him as we did not realise he was now a woman called Phillippa York.
Using the skiing technique Issy got delivered to the top of Crask and rolled down about 10km to the shores of Loch Naver. Another proper downhill, think Chamonix’s Valle Blanche. Met with the boys and now we are camped on the loch's side. This is a winner. Beautiful calm and quiet evening. We have not seen anyone since the posh fishermen in their Range Rover looked down their noses at us quite a while ago. Quite a killer spot. Literally as we are being eaten to death by mozzies.
Quick swim in the loch to rest the muscles. Now to supper.
What a joy. No driving to the start point tomorrow. Spending the night in John O'Groats, 100km away. Wow. Well done to all, a lot of mileage covered. Very proud of the cycling machines.
£9,702 raised for The Brain Tumour Charity, thank you to all our supporters. The £ will make such a difference for future sufferers and has really motivated us to 'dig deep' on the hills.
PS. Issy found a her own support car.