Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Cupar 01/09/13

Autumn arrived with a cold start today, putting a few folks off going out.  Ron was at the leisure centre but was recovering from an operation on his hand so was not going out.  This left just three of us to head to the Kingdom of Fife for a run to Cupar.  Thankfully it was not raining but there was a strong wind from the south west and we had to pedal just to keep moving down Carrot Hill as we headed for Dundee.

 We stopped for a roll and a hot drink at the Tay Bridge Cafe before heading for Strathkinness and the second climb of the day.  From Strathkinness we turned right and into the wind for a couple of miles.  We turned right at Pitscottie a mile early to get a bit of shelter but it was a busy B road into Cupar.  Unlike Forfar, Cupar has hardly any Cafes and both were shut so we headed up to Cairnie Fruit Farm.  It was a steep climb and felt more than the 10% warning sign which was at the top!

We were lucky with our timing as it got really busy just after we tucked in to large bowls of pasta soup and strong coffee, it was certainly welcome after 40 miles!  After warming up we headed for home, it was cold but there were some climbs to come to warm us up.  The wind was generally behind us so we warmed up fairly quickly, a brief stop before we headed over the bridge into the wind, we were buffeted by the wind but it was not as bad as we feared!

From the Tay we headed up through Stobie past the Morgan and  out to Fintray, Bridge of Duntrune, as we climbed up Todhillswe discussed the route home.  Normally it would be via Glamis from this point but Charlie suggested Nether Finlarg, it is a dead end but there is a farm track which takes you through and down to the Inverarity road.  From there we headed straight back to Forfar over the Whirlies and had planned to head in via the Farm track but there must have been an event on as the rod was clogged up so we went down to the Glamis Rd and in via McDonalds.

Back into Forfar we had completed just under 70 miles and climbed nearly 4000'.  The route is here if you fancy a lumpy day!

This coming week is Dunning, meet up 9:00am at the leisure centre.

Stonehaven - 25/08/13

Another cool damp start saw only a small group leave the leisure centre, two of the regulars staying home to try earning some brownie points before heading off on a 10 day tour to the Western Isles.  

The last two trips to the 'Auld Toon' had been up by the coast first and back via Auchenblae and the Drovers, the hills and twists giving some shelter from the wind but today there was unusual for the north east with virtually no wind.  

We headed to the Drovers turning right over the undulating road that would eventually take us down into the centre of Edzell.  Brian was stopping for a cuppee and Gus was heading for home via either the Brown and White Caterthuns or Glen Lethnot.

This left just Charlie and I to head north.  We kept a steady pace all the way arriving in Stonehaven in good time.  We stopped at a cafe in the centre of the toon for a quick bite to eat before returning on the coast road.  During the trip north we could see that there was a haar  over the coast and we were heading into it as we climbed up the brae past the harbour.  The steep brae was made easier by the singing from a festival which was going on at the harbour.

As we rounded the corner past Dunnottar Castle the sun came out and the gentle wind was now behind us.  We had a short stint on the main road before returning to the hilly B roads for a few miles then back on to the main road with both of us taking turns to keep up a brisk pace which saw us  going through the 26 miles to Montrose in under an hour and a half.

We turned at Montrose towards Hillside then Bridge of Dunn where we saw the old Bluebrid Bus ferrying passengers between the old steam trains and the house.  We caught up with Duncan on the Montrose Rd, he was out for an afternoon run on one of his 9 working bikes.  We had a good bleather before he turned for home leaving Charlie and I to return to Forfar - a good brisk day!