9 May 2019
That might be the best day I've spent on a bike, anywhere, anywhen.
We roll out of Ullapool late, around 11, aiming for Lochinver, where we're told there's food. We've picked up some bread etc. from the Tesco. Food is our greatest constraint, as camping is widely permitted in Scotland. i.e. needn't rely on a campsite. It's a 48km ride or so, and the idea is to split the planned ride to Scourie to let me recover a bit more.
After a boring and wet exit from Ullapool, we take a left at Drumrunie onto the road past Stac Pollaidh. Great riding, single track, such a good flow to the road, fun, up and down, good lines of sight, few cars. It's sunny, but the wind is cold.
After a right turn we're onto the Wee Mad Road. It kicks off with a climb, but mainly it's just flowing road, inland and coast, primrose, violet, sheep, stunted trees, bees. It's nothing short of stunningly beautiful.
We get to Lochinver around 3pm, feeling in good shape. We stop for a pie. Late lunch, I guess. At the Spar, we add some ingredients to our meal bag. We're trying to insure ourselves against hunger in case we have to stop away from a town.
And we set off again, into another world. More climbing, lochs, rocks, Mazda MX-5s, and then, we pop out into grazing grassland. It reminds me most of Mongolia. Clachtoll, Stoer, Clashnessie, Drumbeg. After passing through Lochinver, we had aimed for Drumbeg, as it has food. We got there around six.
Neither of us hungry, we decide to press on towards Kylesku. We assume the worst and hope to cover the 15km in an hour and a half. We want to make the Kylesku Hotel for food. We get in about ten mins under that target, the road has been rampantly up and down. It's quite a challenging end to the day.
The guy in the Kylesku Hotel tells us of a good camping spot. The view over the sea loch is great, and it's so so silent.