This was our second trip of 2019 to the bothy and again we elected to camp and allow the fellow visitors to sleep in the bothy. We believe travel by bicycle has the power to encourage conservation, inclusivity, and respect for all people and cultures. I thought i would share my build process and future plans for it. Little of the north of Scotland is inhabited, either through its unsuitability or because of the devastating Highland clearances of the 1700s. The jackets were packed away, and shorts were called for now. The weather was a little overcast, but the water was still. I awoke a couple of hours later and found that I had drifted off (as had Jack). View The Classics, The Bikepacking Journal is our printed collection of inspiring writing and beautiful photography.Find details here alongside a growing collection of web exclusive features... Have one to share? Mindset. First, a delayed start pushed us to rethink and turn the route on its head, starting at Cape Wrath itself to remove the unknown of a return home from the far north on the final day. Start Here, Broadly speaking, there are three bikepacking genres to choose from – Multi-day Mountain Biking, Ultralight Race & Gravel, and Expedition & Dirt Touring. As we climbed away from the coast and inland, the midges dissipated and gave way to some light drizzle. It was Cape Wrath (Scotland’s most Northernly point on the mainland) and the remote café was open for business (as it is 24 hours a day 365 days a year). High up (Ullapool / Cape Wrath) or lower (Glasgow/Fort William)? Beulah, a collaborative film between Pannier and Brother Cycles, follows their unsupported cycle trip to explore the Cape Wrath track; a journey inspired by a 1970s OS Map Sheet of the most north-westerly part of Scotland. As failures go, this one was certainly a winner. Set it up for XC race speed and a trail centre slayer or set it up for all-day comfort loaded with bags and ride rugged country, bothy trips to Cape Wrath and beyond. For me, being warm and dry and knowing I was safe and had food and water simplified the task ahead. And of course, with each climb came an adrenaline-inducing descent. Its beauty is in its simplicity, but don’t confuse simple with basic. Fast and fun. An Turas Mor: Cape Wrath to Glasgow by Bike - BIKEPACKING.com Naomi Freireich set out for a solo time trial from Cape Wrath to Glasgow on Scotland's An … Set it up for XC race speed and a trail centre slayer or set it up for all-day comfort loaded with bags and ride rugged country, bothy trips to Cape Wrath and beyond. But I knew this ride counted more than an FKT would. Fast and fun. Cape Wrath Home Blog Bikepacking Cape Wrath. Cick the link to see them plotted or select from the links to the right to filter. By the time I popped out in Aberfoyle the dusk was creeping in and I had around 80km to go until the end. It uses old drove roads and military roads and new hydroelectric access roads, all linked by small sections of minor country road and walking paths to create a 354-mile (562-kilometre in new money) route from Scotland’s largest city to the most westerly part of the north coast. Thankfully, the first climb started with a smooth hydro access path. Join Stefan, Will, Luke and Jordan - the guys behind the film Beulah - as they discuss the ever-popular pursuit of bikepacking, various bike and kit setups, their trip to Cape Wrath, and the experiences of filming by bike. Simply put, bikepacking is the synthesis of mountain biking and minimalist camping; it evokes the freedom of multi-day backcountry hiking, with the range and thrill of riding a mountain bike. Rocky Mountains Horses Travel Paths Destinations Horse Trips Traveling Words Approximately 230 miles in length, most people take 2-3 weeks to backpack the trip. I have heard stories that the sense of remoteness and isolation make you think about life a little more poetically. UK official off-road bikepacking routes. Here I met two separate riders going the other way, the first people I’d met on the trails all day. I would be starting having already failed. The Killin to Callander cycle path gave me some easy, flattish kilometres, albeit into a headwind before hitting the three lochs route from Loch Venachar. 33 mi. However, you can step on the Caledonian Sleeper train in London Euston one evening and arrive to wild, breathtaking views of the Scottish Highlands from your cabin window the following morning. Why did it have to be an FKT to be worth doing? This time there was no missing the track. / … Yum. The Cape Wrath Trail is often referred to as Britain’s toughest long distance walk. Length: 23.80 miles Level of ride: Beginner Type of bike: Any though mountain bike preferable. An Turas Mór is a long-distance MTB route from Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Art Gallery in the beautiful west end, all the way to Cape Wrath’s remote lighthouse. And finally, to Charlie. Lael, Chris, Erik & Rue explore the High Sierras of California with bikes and bike backpacks. It’s not actually a trail though, but a route. From there, the path became more familiar to me. 1. It also made me appreciate just how much comfort we have in our lives now, from basic Maslovian needs to our modern lives that increase our scope for travel and communication. I’d ridden it once before with Charlie a couple of years ago and knew what was ahead of me. An hour before the film started, we put a shout out for you folks to get creative and sketch one of the bikes, or scenes, from Rainspotting – the sketchier the better – and dangled a box of Outdoor Provisions bars as a Grand Prize. I woke late on day three. To ride to the end of the trail past my old University haunts, along the Kelvin cycle path, past Maryhill, the Botanical Gardens, and through Kelvingrove beneath Glasgow University felt like such a fitting way to end my ride. Once back at the bothy, we made a brew and climbed into our sleeping bags to warm up. Having that positivity to push on when the only reason to do so is that mindset itself; it’s a life skill that doesn’t come naturally to most. Quick, lightweight 29er modern mountain bike, a genuine multi-activity hardtail. Quick, lightweight 29er modern mountain bike, a genuine multi-activity hardtail. What looked like a short distance ended up taking a good hour and a half through overgrown paths, and by the time I met up with my husband Charlie in the trailhead car park, I was famished. As we climbed away from the coast and inland, the midges dissipated and gave way to some light drizzle. My Achilles tendon at my left heel was really painful and the climbing of the day before was evident in my legs. It didn’t fail to live up to its expectations. There ware many stops along the way to take in the sites of the MOD buildings and abandoned homes. This day I knew would be tough, with three big climbs before I even got to the biggest of the route, and the highest road pass in Scotland, the Corrieyairack Pass. As you descend the track, the stunning views of the bothy open up with an expanse of golden sanded beach wrapped up out the harsh winds by towering cliffs and hills all around. This would be among the most beautiful places I passed through on the ride. Lee Craigie and Andy Toop used fatbikes and packrafts to access the rugged terrain and rough seas. When it comes to bikepacking, there’s a world of options, not just limited to what kind of bike is best, but also about clothing, cooking equipment, sleeping systems - the list goes on. Learn More, We have ~100 routes on our worldwide bikepacking routes map. Then, on arrival, the weather scuppering our chance of a ferry crossing from Durness (the only means to reach Cape Wrath) meant I would be starting, not from one end, but with 20km unridden and unrideable by me. Whilst keeping our heads down and riding against the driving rain, we managed to go straight past the track. For the support, the selfless gift of his time and patience, and for the stunning photographs by which to remember a truly unforgettable weekend. The rest was (almost) all downhill. From the north, the pass climbs almost 700m over 12km to its highest point, then descends on a majestic but incredibly rough set of switchbacks that keep you on your toes. Home. Set it up for XC race speed and a trail centre slayer or set it up for all-day comfort loaded with bags and ride rugged country, bothy trips to Cape Wrath and beyond. I’d been up in the night needing the toilet and had to hobble. In her spare time, Naomi loves to take off and explore the wilds by bike. Hardtail trail centre mountain bike compatible with 27.5+ or 29 inch wheels. I bought a Cape Wrath from 97 from retrobike. I could imagine the views would be stunning had the cloud not been so low. Located in Scotland, it runs from Fort William, through the Highlands and Western Scotland, to the lighthouse at Cape Wrath, the northwestern-most point of Scotland. to support us & get The Bikepacking Journal. Find her story of pushing herself in the face of failure here…, Words by Naomi Freireich (@frikfrak74), photos by Charlie Lees (@charlielees). We must have missed it a while back. framebags are, IMHO, one of the first things you need when bikepacking. For 70 years, Cycling UK’s Cape Wrath Fellowship has put cyclists to the test. People have been strapping bags to handlebars and donning backpacks since the dawn of mountain biking, and using their knobbly-tyred bikes to explore remote routes unreachable on day trips. We got the bikes packed up and headed out to the pickup point for the ferry. Another hydro road climb followed by a beautiful switchback descent took me close to Killin and a lunch break. Multi-activity 29er for fast, flowy trails, hurtling over (US) I’d done it. The tracks were quite reasonable and the climbs all doable at a casual pace. What is Bikepacking? Bikepacking An Turas Mor Glasgow to Cape Wrath, Solo and packrafting across Kyle Of Durness to finish. 26 inch retro frame, some wide bars, get those wide tyres in and let's get going. Cycle magazine; Cycle Campaign News ; CycleClips e-newsletter; Velocheer; Jobs; History. After work on the Friday evening I chucked my bike on the roof of my car and took the long drive up to Durness. Damn! Within a couple of miles, a strange building appeared through the mist in the distance. There is no escaping it I’m afraid! I think everybody on this forum that uses one has the same opinion. Well, it is in fact almost a thousand kilometres from where we currently live in Sussex. The ride back to the ferry was just stunning. About. We had a ferry to catch, so had a fairly strict time plan to keep to. This time, we finally got to see all those spectacular sceneries. A great overnight trip to the Ruigh Aiteachain bothy on the Glenfeshie estate to celebrate a couple of phat boys birthdays. Publications. Originally published in The Bikepacking Journal 03, Ditibised is Alexandera Houchin’s extraordinary story of training for the Tour Divide, framed in four seasons…. When you live on the south coast, Scotland seems an awful long way away. Designed to be ridden over a leisurely eight days, its inauguration was a race event, which saw the record time being set at just over four days. Nothing my bike couldn’t handle. Never mind – Crack on to Cape Wrath lighthouse for a cup of coffee and a nice hot lunch was the decision made at that point. The route begged to be ridden, and I wasn’t going to let 20 small kilometres stop me from enjoying the other 540! Located in Sutherland in the Highlands of Scotland, Cape Wrath is the most northwestern point of the UK. An Turas Mor: Cape Wrath to Glasgow by Bike - BIKEPACKING.com Day 3 stats: 225km and 3478m of climbing. A short film about a journey to the most northwesterly point on the UK mainland — Cape Wrath. Home Blog Bikepacking Ruigh Aiteachain Bothy, Glenfeshie. Beulah Tour Cycling Cape Wrath & Scotland's Wild North-West - a three day bikepacking trip to the most north-westerly point of the British Mainland, along our loneliest road... Stefan Amato & Jordan Gibbons Cape Wrath. Visit this section to learn how to choose a route, and some insight into navigation. The Cape Wrath Trail runs from Fort William to Cape Wrath on Scotland’s northwest coast, for approximately 280 miles. The evening was now rolling in, so we brought the bikes in (that salty air won’t do my bike any favours overnight) and got a fire set. I awoke early next day. It was here I knew I could do it. Stretching approximately 230 miles (370 km) from the Highland hub of Fort William to the remote lighthouse of Cape Wrath, it is an unmarked and sometimes trailless route that passes through the wild and spectacular landscapes of northwestern Scotland. I didn’t know what to expect. Crammed into a long weekend, this would be tight, with work sandwiching either side, plus the intricacies of the route itself. Cape Wrath – 31/08/18 to 02/09/19. From the end of the West Highland Way in Milngavie, the section along the rural parts of the Kelvin was definitely experimental, and the combination of mud, fallen trees, and giant hogweed could have really destroyed my calm were it not for the knowledge that I was mere teens of kilometres from the end. Beyond that, all we knew for sure was we wanted to reach the lighthouse at Cape Wrath and the route we ended up riding was quite different to what we’d originally planned! We all know what the run up to Christmas is like, don’t we? We rose with the light, enjoyed a tasty breakfast with our view, and headed to the ferry point, the closest I could get to the end to begin my journey. The bikes were soon back on the roof and we started the long drive back home to Grantown. And despite the pain and fatigue I felt, the joy of being there and knowing my body was capable of powering me to the top kept me pushing on and kept me smiling. On the plus side, we got to spend a glorious afternoon and night on the north coast of Scotland. To view them all, click through to the komoot Collection and hit … The CWT is more of a route than a trail because it’s not blazed or way-marked and because you can connect the endpoints using any sequence of trails, 4×4 tracks, paths, roads, or off-trail segments to connect the two endpoints. Feeling refreshed we took a few tourist pics and cracked on back along the route we had came back towards the bothy at Kearvaig. When we stepped outside, it was wonderful to find that the clouds and dull weather had all dissipated overnight. The Cape Wrath Trail begins in Fort William which is about 3 hours north of Glasgow on the west coast of Scotland, by bus or train. Day two was all about climbing. Once on the other side of the water, the midges instantly swarmed on us like a cloud, so the decision was promptly made to get under way and out from the swarms of nibblers. Chris and Jelle tour the very north-west of Scotland by bike - to Sandwood Bay with flippers, surf boards and wetsuits in tow, before bikepacking the famed road to Cape Wrath... Chris McClean & Jelle Mul I ring the bell but it takes her an age to arrive at the food window. History timeline; Obituaries. In a sense, at least. This time, we finally got to see all those spectacular sceneries. Click the link below to learn about each. And aiming for the fastest time over the route is the ambition that spurs me on, but if the possibility of completing it is dashed from the offset, what drive is there to suffer anyway? Simply put, bikepacking is the synthesis of mountain biking and minimalist camping; it evokes the freedom of multi-day backcountry hiking, with the range and thrill of riding a mountain bike. West Coast of Scotland sounds nice. It has seen tragedy in its past and its remoteness gives you a sense of tranquillity beyond anything frequently experienced before. More here. Click the link below to find out how to start. I could imagine the views would be stunning had the cloud not been so low. My goal was to go faster. Of course, the best choice for you is very much dependent on what And to see the Gallery lit up in all its glory was properly emotional. The bothy is known as one of the best in Scotland. Bikepacking is a relatively recent phenomenon. This was the hardest section of the ride and I was through it. All that remained was the small matter of what now. We parked up the van next to Ceannabeinne Beach, which was utterly breathtaking. Arriving late in the evening, I met up with my biking buddy, Jack Kirkbride. After work on the Friday evening I chucked my bike on the roof of my car and took the long drive up to Durness. Surely the turn onto the path that would lead us down to Kearvaig Bothy was close! Many thanks to GORE Wear for having my back (and legs, arms, feet and hands). One hotly debated topic is the choice of sleeping arrangements, with tents and bivvy bags often fighting it out for top spot. All in, 175km and 3,281m of climbing. The Cape Wrath Fellowship. View The Map, There are some routes that are made classic by their sheer perfection, and others by races. Accidentally switching off my alarm meant my morning routine was condensed to 15 minutes of mad panic. This would be a journey about far more than just the distance I would ride. The path is not waymarked and has many variations. Multi-activity 29er for fast, flowy trails, hurtling over (EU) Try one. After a hot brew and a hearty meal of beans on toast, I enquired to the keeper “how do you get all your supplies out here?” It turns out that they get helicoptered in a couple of times a year! With stunning drone shots and a voiceover by Lee, the short film depicts an adventure with a twist. Derek Buttle 1930-2017 We walked on the sand at low tide, climbed rocks, ate dinner with a view, and after a good night’s rest, woke with the sunrise over the bay. Trust me. As soon as you start from the Durness side, you are straight into a steep climb. Thankfully the track has been partially tarmacked thanks to a heavy MOD presence in the area. The further on we progressed, the more the bad weather came in. We decided to take a breather and check our map. Just the faint sound of the sea and wind and the crackling of the fire. Dinner was a one pot masterpiece of chicken curry and rice. It didn’t take long to drift off that night! The vast uninhabited highlands have been really opened up for riding by the hydroelectric industry, with the access roads reaching high up into the hills where the dams, turbines, and solar generate 90% of the energy consumed in Scotland. In the morning (and if I’m honest, from when I found out about the ferry cancellation), I knew what I was going to do. 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