Start: Loch Lochy
End: Culrain
Total Miles: 897.08
Time in saddle: 6h 32m
Average: 13.16 mph
Daily Miles: 85.24

Thu 17 June 2004

I left Loch Lochy hostel with Pedro just sitting down to his breakfast. I wished him well with the rest of his stay which was to include Stonehenge. I set off in cooler cloudy skies heading for Fort Augustus. I did well getting there and the weather stayed dry. Apart from the first 10 minutes of cycling, my butt doesnt trouble me much until over 70 miles. I made real good progress for 30 miles to Drumandadrochit and beans on toast again. Today was to be the shortest ride so I thought I could get to Culrain by 5pm for the England game. I stopped by a small filling station with an auto workshop. I wanted to tap the owner for a bit of oil for my chain. The workshop was empty so I turned around and promptly fell over, with the bike on top of me! Laughing, I got up. I was spotted by an old boy filling his car up. He laughed too, then asked if I was ok. Nothing broken, I oiled my chain and made for Beauly hill. This is a 1 in 6 that goes up for 3/4 mile. I havent walked up any hills this trip and it was close today, but I made it. 10 miles later with a rapid descent I was in Beauly. It had now started raining heavily and the roads were full of water. The wind was picking up after Dingwall along the Cromarty Firth. I turned off the A9 and was going to Bonar Bridge over "The Struie". This is essentially a mountain pass and took ages. It is about 14 miles long with a fierce descent and sharp bends on the way down. Glad that was over, I was too cold and too wet!

Stopped at the village shop before the last 5 miles to Culrain and the Magnificent Carbisdale Castle. Sod the football, I hope the showers are hot!

Good bits: Dry & fast by Loch Ness. Shortest journey. Staying in a superb castle.

Bad bits: Its been over a week now and I really miss my family. Cold & rain.