Published: May 13th 2012May 13th 2012
Well! what have we got here? Woke up to horrendous wind in the early hours and then rain beating on the windows. We got all our waterproofs out and packed our bags with a multitude of plastic bags to keep out the water - if that is going to be possible. Bill found out a bus timetable during breakfast and the plan is to see if the local bus will take us and our bikes straight to Portree. The day is due to worsen with 60mph wind gusts - just what we need on a bike. I think I will get my book out. Sitting it out in the Millbrae Guesthouse and having my second cup of coffee with the very interesting proprietor Philip until the bus at 11.45 was a good option. We eventually gingerly stepped out into the worsening rain and rode a mile to the bus shelter, which we shared with two Dutch men who had taken a week off to walk on Skye. I felt sorry for them since the weather forecast is wet all week and such a shame to not see the wonderful views on offer, at least it keeps the midges away. When the
bus arrived we asked the driver if he would take us and he replied that he was not allowed to take bikes. Bill asked if an exception could be made and he fortunately took pity on us and stowed the bikes in the hold under the floor.We noticed the steams were becoming rivers and white water was everywhere! Perhaps we should be rafting? The spray from vehicles was enormous and if we had been riding we would have been drowned. We arrived in Portree at 12.30pm, donned our capes again and slithered into the Granary restaurant in the square, where we made a bowl of soup and a coffee last 1 1/2 hrs. A chap came up to us and said how brave we were to cycle in such disgusting weather. We reluctantly had to admit that we were actually wimps in disguise, then another couple gave us a fiver for Cancer Research bringing the total casual cash gifts received on tour to £145. Outside again into the wild once more to see if there was a bike shop we could spend some time in, but it was unfortunately closed with it being Sunday (and Scotland). Next stop was a pub to hide in for the afternoon. Bill found one and we stored our bikes under the fire escape at the rear and went in to get drunk!! Some chance. “Formula One” in Barcelona was on the television so we saw the last few laps and Williams winning for first time in 8 years. We were a bit envious of the sunny weather at the ecent in Barcelona. Will the rain ever stop? We had arranged to meet Steve Lee later, who was touring solo in the Isles, but if he has any sense he will have made a dash for home where it is now sunny and warm. Andy, our kind host for tonight, picked us up from the pub later in the afternoon and took us to his house down by the loch, following behind his car with our capes billowing. A nice shower, some food and we were back in business and believe it or not the rain ceased and we took a brisk walk up onto the hillside overlooking the town. Tomorrow is already looking better and we are looking forward to our cycle to Uig in hopefully better weather. I managed to contact Steve later when I eventually got a signal on my phone but it was too late to meet up. Maybe tomorrow.