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Published: February 14th 2016
A very early start this morning, out of bed at 4:30 to get ready for the 6:00 start, however it did lead to another one of those Forest Gump moments. After riding round the outskirts of Glasgow in the dark we emerged into the countryside just as the sun was rising. It was a spectacular moment, closely followed by what would become order of the day, a long 4-mile climb up the Campsie Fells which was followed by an equally long descent.
At the first pit stop at Thornhill we were again greeted by the local school whose children were holding a cake sale to raise money for the school. We were cheered in and out of the stop, another moving moment. The scenery on this day was some of the most spectacular of the whole trip and we had our very own tour guide In Martin, who was originally from Perth, knew the area well and was able to point out to us all of the local landmarks.
Going over Glen Coe despite the climbs was awe inspiring. As I have said elsewhere on this blog every day had a low point where I wondered if I would
make it. Despite eating all the time you still run out of energy. To illustrate the point on day 7 just I was starting another long climb I looked down at my Garmin and realised that despite riding 75 miles already that day I still had another 50 to go and I certainly did not feel that I had the energy to finish. You’re tied, hungry and your legs hurt and the easiest thing in the world would be just to get off and call for the broom wagon, but you don’t, you just keep turning the pedals and stick with the group. But you then get the other end of the scale, riding in a group you each take a turn on the front, you also pass other riders along the way and they jump on the tail of the train and get a tow for a few miles. Before the third pit stop it rotated round to my turn on the front, just we started another climb, and just as we passed a lady solo rider at the pit stop a further two miles down the road she was still on the back and she came up to
me and thanked me for pulling her along. She had been having one of the lows that we all got but by getting on the back she had got through it. Her gesture in coming to speak to me sums up the sprit of the RAB.
We finished the day with a long 10-mile descent and a flat run in to our campsite in the shadow of Ben Nevis. Total mileage 126.6, 7,018 feet of climbing, 8:37:12 riding time
Tot: 1.207s; Tpl: 0.048s; cc: 14; qc: 28; dbt: 0.0147s; 1; m:saturn w:www (184.108.40.206); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb