The tracks were quite reasonable and the climbs all doable at a casual pace. And to see the Gallery lit up in all its glory was properly emotional. 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. 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. 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. The path is not waymarked and has many variations. framebags are, IMHO, one of the first things you need when bikepacking. I could imagine the views would be stunning had the cloud not been so low. Trust me. Mindset. 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. With stunning drone shots and a voiceover by Lee, the short film depicts an adventure with a twist. Arriving late in the evening, I met up with my biking buddy, Jack Kirkbride. Riding along the familiar West Highland Way, even in the opposite direction to the other times I’ve ridden it, felt like I was home already. At the time of researching the route, the most information I had was someone thinking the record was around three days. The drizzle turned into rain and we were both getting fairly soaked by this point. After checking in with Charlie and deciding on a camping spot for the night, one final small climb of the day was all that remained. I have heard stories that the sense of remoteness and isolation make you think about life a little more poetically. 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. 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. It’s not actually a trail though, but a route. For 70 years, Cycling UK’s Cape Wrath Fellowship has put cyclists to the test. The ride back to the ferry was just stunning. The rest was (almost) all downhill. Hallelujah! To view them all, click through to the komoot Collection and hit … Learn More, As important as it is to have a reliable bike and pack as light as you can, choosing the right route is perhaps the key to your enjoyment. One after another after another. Cick the link to see them plotted or select from the links to the right to filter. 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? When you live on the south coast, Scotland seems an awful long way away. This time, we finally got to see all those spectacular sceneries. Lael, Chris, Erik & Rue explore the High Sierras of California with bikes and bike backpacks. This was the hardest section of the ride and I was through it. Gear that Worked I would be starting having already failed. I really worried that I wouldn’t be able to ride. Day two was all about climbing. The penultimate section started from Croick Church, possibly one of the most haunting reminders of the clearances, with the names of the families who sheltered there after their houses were burned to remove them etched into the glass windows. Approximately 230 miles in length, most people take 2-3 weeks to backpack the trip. Thankfully, everything was packed from the day before and that surge of adrenaline meant I wasn’t thinking about the pain. Laura's packs. The drizzle turned into rain and we were both getting fairly soaked by this point. An Turas Mor: Cape Wrath to Glasgow by Bike - Naomi Freireich set out for a solo time trial from Cape Wrath to Glasgow on Scotland's An … 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. Why did it have to be an FKT to be worth doing? What a place. It didn’t take long to drift off that night! 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. Cape Wrath Trail Backpacking Gear List, Explained Philip Werner Gear Lists, Scotland The Cape Wrath Trail travels up the west coast of Scotland, beginning in Fort William, and ending at Cape Wrath which is the northernmost point of Britain. to support us & get The Bikepacking Journal. The weather was a little overcast, but the water was still. 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. 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. About. Expect fully loaded bikes, empty roads & wilderness, campfires, bothies, tents, and a steady flow of single malt… 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. Little of the north of Scotland is inhabited, either through its unsuitability or because of the devastating Highland clearances of the 1700s. Exposure lights for their excellent bike lights keeping me safe on the roads and on the right path off them. Day 3 stats: 225km and 3478m of climbing. Rainspotting – our second film together with Brother Cycles (following Beulah, 2016) – tracks our 84-hour wintry bikepacking ramble through Scotland’s gloomy Grampians. Damn! 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. 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. Cycle magazine; Cycle Campaign News ; CycleClips e-newsletter; Velocheer; Jobs; History. Try one. I stopped for lunch with Charlie after the second of these descents, the climb to which had been on an old and very rocky military road. Multi-activity 29er for fast, flowy trails, hurtling over (EU) Another hydro road climb followed by a beautiful switchback descent took me close to Killin and a lunch break. The tracks were quite reasonable and the climbs all doable at a casual pace. It was here I knew I could do it. So during quarantine I really wanted to make another project, something off-grid, to get me going to forests, lakes and all the places I wanted. Hardtail trail centre mountain bike compatible with 27.5+ or 29 inch wheels. As we climbed away from the coast and inland, the midges dissipated and gave way to some light drizzle. Arriving late in the evening, I met up with my biking buddy, Jack Kirkbride. By the time I popped out in Aberfoyle the dusk was creeping in and I had around 80km to go until the end. Cape Wrath Home Blog Bikepacking Cape Wrath. It didn’t fail to live up to its expectations. All that remained was the small matter of what now. The jackets were packed away, and shorts were called for now. My goal was to go faster. In a sense, at least. Bikepacking An Turas Mor Glasgow to Cape Wrath, Solo and packrafting across Kyle Of Durness to finish. 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. It was so dark by now, but my lights kept me safe and marked the way onward. If you’d like to see the complete list of gear I brought for this, the southern half (140 miles) of the Cape Wrath Trail, it’s detailed in this (linked) gear list post. To Mason Cycles for loaning me the über-capable InSearchOf; truly a bike for all terrain (and I checked this was true over the weekend!). The Cape Wrath Fellowship. This time, we finally got to see all those spectacular sceneries. Well, it is in fact almost a thousand kilometres from where we currently live in Sussex. 26 inch retro frame, some wide bars, get those wide tyres in and let's get going. Seeing the remote remains of former settlements really brought home just how much this period changed the landscape of Scotland both physically and emotionally for those families forced out of their homes. is dedicated to exploration by bicycle. All in, 175km and 3,281m of climbing. Nothing my bike couldn’t handle. Accidentally switching off my alarm meant my morning routine was condensed to 15 minutes of mad panic. And not done it all at the same time. Trust me. Thankfully, the first climb started with a smooth hydro access path. 1. 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. Day one can be described as incredible remoteness, tough hike-a-bike, rain, wind, and stunning landscapes. There is no escaping it I’m afraid! Click the link below to find out how to start. I awoke early next day. 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. 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. There ware many stops along the way to take in the sites of the MOD buildings and abandoned homes. Quick, lightweight 29er modern mountain bike, a genuine multi-activity hardtail. After work on the Friday evening I chucked my bike on the roof of my car and took the long drive up to Durness. 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. Find her story of pushing herself in the face of failure here…, Words by Naomi Freireich (@frikfrak74), photos by Charlie Lees (@charlielees). I awoke a couple of hours later and found that I had drifted off (as had Jack). So much history is attached to these roads, and to be able to ride them still is pretty mind-blowing. This part is a single room separate from the rest of the bothy with a sleeping platform for two or three and its own fire place. Fast and fun. More here. Once back at the bothy, we made a brew and climbed into our sleeping bags to warm up. I really hope you will join us. As failures go, this one was certainly a winner. 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. / … Okay, the use of the word official might not be solidly defined, but here are *most* of the recognised long distance bikepacking across England, Scotland and Wales. This was the ride I did against all odds and completed anyway, always with a smile. 33 mi. 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. 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. The Cape Wrath Trail is considered the hardest hiking route in the United Kingdom. Located in Sutherland in the Highlands of Scotland, Cape Wrath is the most northwestern point of the UK. View All Features. Lee Craigie and Andy Toop used fatbikes and packrafts to access the rugged terrain and rough seas. The further on we progressed, the more the bad weather came in. I woke late on day three. 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. Undertaking a 560-kilometre bikepacking route through the wilds of the far north of Scotland in autumn weather definitely takes a certain mindset. Of course, the best choice for you is very much dependent on what I would really recommend bikepacking to anyone who loves to ride a bike. Standing there in the wind and rain, I knew the old me would have been making my excuses already, but in that moment I knew I was ready for this, and I also knew just what completing the journey no matter what now would mean to me. Bikes and luggage all on aboard. The Cape Wrath Trail runs from Fort William to Cape Wrath on Scotland’s northwest coast, for approximately 280 miles. 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. Blue skies and warm sunshine had come out to see us off! This would be among the most beautiful places I passed through on the ride. This time there was no missing the track. We parked up the van next to Ceannabeinne Beach, which was utterly breathtaking. Add to that the low-lying clouds I was to pass through and that whole section of the trip was shrouded in the air of mystery and wonder. During this period of uncertainty, it has been nice to return to thinking about our more basic needs. Cape Wrath. 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. It was lovely to stop and chat to both and hear the stories of their ride. The nearest access point is Corrour Station, the highest train station in the U.K., which is only reachable on foot or on the train itself. After work on the Friday evening I chucked my bike on the roof of my car and took the long drive up to Durness. I think everybody on this forum that uses one has the same opinion. The bothy is known as one of the best in Scotland. It didn’t seem to hold me back though, and I made it through the Ardverikie estate in record time and was heading up to Loch Ossian. These incredible roads, which quite often head straight over the tops of mountains (see the Corrieyairack as a case in point), were built in the mid-1700s in a push to get General Wade’s army into the highlands of Scotland to control the Jacobite rebellion. Home. Just the faint sound of the sea and wind and the crackling of the fire. Rocky Mountains Horses Travel Paths Destinations Horse Trips Traveling Words A great overnight trip to the Ruigh Aiteachain bothy on the Glenfeshie estate to celebrate a couple of phat boys birthdays.