Tuesday, 31 December 2013

The MacDonald Arms - 29/12/13

The last club run of the year started slowly with a puncture, thankfully it wasn't raining - just cold, sunny with a light breeze.  We were heading to Balbeggie, the coffee shop in the garage has been closed for over a year now and was a popular stop for cyclists but we had not been to the MacDonald Arms at the top of the hill as a group before.

We made good progress through Newtyle and were heading for Laughing Horse Hill where Ron and Gus turned for Meigle and Ardler leaving the rest of us to slog up the hill.  It's a lumpy route and we had a fair amount of ice and slush to contend with.  We had passed through Kinrossie and were just a Thorngreen when disaster struck for Colin.  The free wheel completely went  so he was stuck, thankfully it was only a couple of miles to the pub and our lunch time stop and most of it was downhill so he was able to coast with David and I giving him a push up the hills.

Thankfully a relative was able to come and pick him up so he got home OK.  We headed back along the main road but it was pretty busy so we turned off back  into Kinrossie and the back roads to Ardler.  Donal's chain was slipping and coming off, thankfully the roads were fairly flat so there wasn't to much need to change gears.

The wind had got up and it was getting cold, with frozen feet a stop for some in the Tav was required to thaw out before heading back to Forfar.

Boxing Day Run - Carnoustie - 26/12/13

After the went and windy Christmas Day Boxing Day was the complete opposite - bright, sunny and only a light breeze from the South West.

A good size group met at the leisure centre to work of the Christmas excesses and after a brief chat we decided on Carnoustie which would give us the wind behind us for most of the way back.

The side roads were slippy so we took the main road heading up the hills through Kingsmuir, Crachie stopping to regroup at Little Lochlair and a final decision on the route.  We didn't expect anything other than the Coop to be open so were delighted to find that the cafe on the corner was open so we got coffee scones and rolls to warm up  before the long grind up past Mains of Panmuir to Craigton past Affleck Castle, Lucky Slap and Husbandtown and onto the back road between Forfar and Dundee.  It was fairly quiet but we turned left for Whiggstreet and Lour follwed by Caldhame and home.

Mince Pie Run - 22/12/13

Ron and Pat were hosting this years Christmas run in Kirriemuir so we had a couple of hours to do the 6 miles up the road.  The weather was mixed as we set off for Inverarity, the wind was pretty strong so we turned early and headed for Douglastown past Kinnettles House and got our first soaking

We regrouped and headed up towards Glamis and got caught in another heavy rain shower, the wind was getting stronger and with no sign of the rain easing we headed to the Glamis Hotel for a coffee and the chance to dry out.

As always we were made more than welcome they quickly cleared a couple of tables allowing the 12 of us sit and have a bleather.  The rain stopped and the sun came out an it was a very pleasant run as we were blown up the hill to Kirrie where soup and treats were waiting for us.

Jimmy and Donal ready for the rain!

Many thanks to Ron and Pat for hosting the afternoon,

Meikleour - 15/12/13

Another fine Sunday morning saw a good size group heading for Christmas soup at Meikleour home of the longest and tallest hedge in the world.

We headed out via the Drumgley and the Bogside Road turning right up to Ruthven past the old castle and left onto the A926 towards the 5 Rd roundabout. Gus, Jimmy, Rona and Tom turned off here leaving 5 of us to head for Blair.

We were heading down a wee incline and as I changed to the big ring my chain broke so we had a brief stop to mend it, before heading n to Blair.  Keith turned for home at the lights leaving 4 to press on.  It always seems like much further from Blairgowrie to Meikleour than the 4 miles it is but Donald took the pace followed by myself then Charlie and we flew along the road to the crossroads.  Donald turned for home leaving just three of us to have soup and a pint, the big fire was on in the bar and it was an effort to go back out into the cold!

We headed to Coupar Angus then Ardler for a top up before heading back into Forfar with the wind behind us.  A good day out!