Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Out before the rain

Decided to get out on the MTB before the PM forecast rain, managed a nice cycle to the top of Biglees quarry then down to Hunterston and up Goldenberry.

Played about Goldenberry a bit before going down to the beach, the wind was strong, the waves were high, so got a bit of a sandblasting for 10 minutes or so along the beach trail.

Returned through the Glen and got home just as the rain started.
I've a bit of cycle maintenance to attend to so this looks like a good opertunity, although it seems to be brightening up a bit (2.45pm).

View Goldenberry and Hunterston here.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Only dry at night.

Today was a wash out for cycling, in the morning went out in the damp and rerouted a couple of trail sections round two fallen trees, took about 2.5hrs.

PM tried to refresh my limited Spanish.

It dried up about 6pm so got put a bright white LED light on the MTB and went off down the Glen and beach for an hour. It's OK in a straight line but whenever I made a turn the path disappeared so it's a bit of guesswork at times.
On the way back through the Glen spill light was making all the trees and bushes to the side kind of spooky as I passed.
It's peripheral visions sensitivity to movement making the spooky effect with side light, you've really got to work at ignoring it.

There were a surprising number of people out walking their dogs, making the best of the dry I expect, but I came on them a bit quick with the limited light.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Great local trail

Yesterday after a spot of DIY puting shelves in the new garden shed, got out on the bike and did one of my favourite local trails, it's got technical stuff with a hint of danger, tough stuff in the form of steep climbs (600m), great views over the Clyde to Arran, industrial archaeology (millstone quarry), and marvelous descents,
no need to travel to Glentress for a great trail with these out my back door.... well I suppose it might be OK for a change.

Made up a new web page of the route here.

Today Anne and I went for a strole down the beach but it started drizzling so just did the short loop.
Later went up onto Goldenberry to finally clear a little trail up there ready for the winter short outings, turned quite pleasant, good enough for a few midges to get up and bite. Won't be long now though till there all done...hooray!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

New garden hut

Our new hut came this morning, so will have to move the garden tools into it from the garage.
It only took them half an hour to put it up, it's not very well proofed so will need to give it a good coating of preservative soon.

Fixed the headset on the MTB so the forks are a lot less sloppy, then went for a cycle down the beach, portencross, and the half downhill on Fairlie moor. It was a bit wet but warm enough that it didn't matter much.
Will need to go up the moor and get rid of a droopy branch, it's just too low to get under without bashing my back or stopping dead if I've a bag on.

Picture above is a Swallow tailled butterfly in Alpujarra Spain

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

A following wind

Anne was off to Ochiltree, Ayr and Alloway today so got dropped off at Ochiltree to take advantage of the southerly wind cycling back to WK.

It was quite sunny and warm so enjoyed the wind assisted cycling to Stair, Tarbolton, Galston (the B744 is lovely and quiet for a biggish road) Fenwick, Kilmaurs, Dalry and WK.

On route I stopped off at The Balmoral cafe in Galston and the Gleg Whittle in Kilmaurs.
I was tempted to go the Clunch road north of Fenwick, but would have missed the cafe stop at Kilmaurs and got a head wind back home, so skipped that idea.

Got back about 3pm after 5 hours on the bike, nice outing....view photos here.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Law, Kaim and Portencross

Graham was keen to have a good off road cycle today.
Jim had told me there was a motorcycle trials on the moor today, so we thought it would be good to make our way round there and take in the action.

Went up Law hill to start, its got a good view over WK and a nice little downhill off the back.
Crossed a field onto Crosbie moor and round to Fairlie moor in a bit of a soft (hard work) track, when we got there - no trials bikes - oh well at least the track up to the quarry was still in one piece so we did the downhill, Portencross and the beach.

Five hours on local trails, great fun, see Blaeloch hill photos here.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Straiton to Dailly off road

Had a fabulous off road today from Straiton to Dailly, in sunshine and a cool breeze.

The section across and down to Dailly has a great open moor track followed by a section of twisty singletrack, although its a short climb to get to it.
Around Dailly there are a good number of tracks to enjoy and Tilly's tea room, although sevice there leaves a bit to be desired, I up and left as they didn't give me my serving slot.

Great track along Craigfin through the old quarry, and tea and cake at Bucks in Straiton after a quick change.

Photos here and the web page route description here.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Rocky kind of day

Had an appointment at 12pm today and the morning was damp so decided to collect some more old stones for the garden pond area, our recent purchase of a wheelbarrow helped with the process, still a pain though.

At 3pm was free as a bird and set off toward Fairlie moor for a go on the downhill, strangely enough I met that stupid pheasant again and it trotted along beside me up the moor road until I finally managed to leave it behind when the gradient eased from 1 in 8.

Went to the top of the quarry, the air was clear and gave a fabulous view, blasted all the way down, including my modified section which was OK, to meet Jim on his way home from work.
He says there's a trials on the moor Sunday from 11am, hope they don't cut up the downhill route.
May go up that way to get a few photos of the action.

View downhill key map here.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Gleniffer and Brownside braes

When I called at Walkers cycles in Kilmaurs last week a very helpfull chap directed me to trails on Brownside Braes above Paisley, I went up that way today to check them out.
First I went down to Glen Park and at the south east edge was a trail contouring round to above Brownside farm and up to the top of the hill with fabulous views across Glasgow to the Campsie fells.

While following a not so wonderful trail (ok for walking rubbish for cycling) across to Killoch glen I went over the handlebars and bent my deraileur, some brute force was needed to get it back in line and working before I could get going again.

Eventually found some trail links to make a loop from Glen Park, I'll be adding it to my web page very soon.

Finished off the day by going across the marvellous Brandy burn trail toward Johnstone and looping back on the minor road past Lapwing Lodge.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Puddles and mud

The drizzle stopped about 10 so decided to get out along the beach, Goldenberry and the lower Fairlie moor downhill.

On the way up the moor a handsome cock pheasant took it in mind to trot along beside me keeping pace as I climbed very slowly up the 1 in 8 part of the road, strange behaviour, they normally dash into hiding or fly off whenever someone appears.

Spent about an hour rerouting a bit of the lower downhill away from the felled area, think it's an improvement.

Back 3pm enjoying coffee and a snack as missed lunch.

Picture is Loch Lubnaig from a recent outing to Glen Ample (route here)view more photoshere.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Variation on a Kilmarnock loop

I carry a little Sony camera when out and about on the bike to snap away anything I fancy and today I snapped the little mouse above.

Anne and I went down to Auchincruive today with the intention of picking sloes and elderflower for wine but turned out they wern't quite ready.
I had the road bike and set off for home from Annbank.

I did 95km all on minor roads and saw only a handfull of cars.

I used the old A77 from Fenwick up to "Clunch road" over to Dunlop, never been on it before due to the A77 traffic, now the traffic's all gone it's very nice.

Finished over Fairlie moor (250m climb) so quite tired but it was a great days cycling!

Kilmarnock loop here. pictures here.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Troon and Auchincruive

Graham did a 10km road race during the week so wanted the MTB cycle to be flat and easy so we did the loop from Troon's Fullarton wood to Ayr and Auchincruive.
The park was busy with rugby players, but they were no bother to us, we had a loop round the park then out to Prestwick promenade, Ayr, Auchincruive and a loop along the riverside trail at Annbank.

It was a beautiful morning and we took lots of photos along the way, you can view some here.

The shop in Annbank is being renovated so no bought lunch but I had a few cereal bars to keep us going.

The only negetive with the route is the return through the north end of Prestwick housing. We investigated a track to avoid it but without success, I'll have another go next time.

Very nice easy day out view the route here.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Bike and Garden Maintenance

Sorted out a route from yesterdays efforts as the singletrack was nice and produced a web page here.

Went off for some cycle parts but the first two bike shops were shut so ended up in Prestwick, saving grace though he had some cheep tyres (Tioga XC) to get the bike ready for the coming mud.

Fettled the bike with chain, cassete and tyres, still needs a headset though but will be ok for a while.

Bought some shrubs, did some extreme weeding and now I hear the call "grubs up" so must go.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Gourock trails

Had a great day out today trying to find some trails above Gourock, found some but didn't link into a route unfortunately.

Some single track on the north west of Larkfield industrial estate but it's trail biking tracks so a bit cut up.

Great single track overton cut and then down to Inverkip and back along the beach side to Lunderston.

Great fun but no new route, pictures of Overton cut here.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Irvine Trails

Took the bike on the car to Irvine today to have a go locating some trails again, had some fun and found some trails, even a short (300m) of lovely singletrack in a wood and a few other loops of singletrack in nature reserves.
The trouble is linking it all together into a sensible trail, may just produce a web page of blocks and suggested link routes.

The rain kept away until I was on the way home and it set in properly about 5pm, I love it when I squeeze in a good outing before it chucks it down.

Picture above is of Bute and you can view some more here.

Irvine route description web page here.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Glen Ample singletrack

I've wanted for a while to have a go along Glen Ample near Callander, so I decided to do it today.
The Glen Ample path was good fun in many places but muddy now and again with gritty mud which made those nasty grinding noises on the rims when braking.

The detour round the farm is annoying, but the cycle by the river is nice.

I discovered Balquidder has a tea room in the old library so an extra lunch was welcome after the visit to Rob Roy's grave in the church yard above.

The cycle down the side of Lunaig back to the start is a bit dull but has nice views.

Good day out. View the route description here.

Photos here.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Tussock Galore

Since the weather didn't look very promising this morning decided to go over to Whitelees Forest east of Fenwick and check out some tracks, they didn't look very good on the map and that's just what they were, rubbish.

Spent 4 hours pottering about to Graigendunton Resv then through some thigh deep tussocks to Lochgoin Farm (1.5km carry).
Won't be going there again!

Then checked out the track up to Croilburn just in case there was another track into the forest, but there wasn't, so guess I've exhausted the possibilities of Whitelees.
On the way back called in at Walkers cycles in Kilmaurs to ask about routes, the chap there was very helpfull and suggested a couple of possibilities; for another day, but not Whitelees forest.

Check out a forest track route through Whitelees here.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Warm cycling day

A warm day was promised and it was just that, Anne and I had a cycle from Martnaham Loch round by Dalrymple stopping at Kirkton Inn for a light lunchtime snack.
Anne went off to visit here mother and I cycled back home.

Total cycling time today about 5.5hours, but didn't realise how dehidrated I was until having a couple of cans of beer.

Noticed stacks of people out by the fishery at Tarbolton, the most ever, wonder how the fishing was in the bright sun and heat.

View a central Ayrshire road route here.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Fairlie, Brambles and Downhill MTB

Lovely morning, sunny with a good breeze so Anne and I went for a walk along to Fairlie (route here) over Glantane by my usual cycle track and along the lower track which is nice and dry at the moment.
Got the train back which takes about 4minutes after 2hours walking.

After a spot of late lunch (3pm) went out on the MTB planning to meet Anne for a spot of bramble picking down Hunterston, combined picking 6.5lbs.
I get bored with picking pretty quickly so went off up Kaim quarry for a downhill blast (route here).
Back at 6pm in time for beer and tea.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Largs and Kilmacolm

Access in Scotland, you have a rite in law.... but try getting a horse though this. Maybe bolt cutters and a repair kit is the answer!

On the web this morning, one phone call, one email and two trips to the bank and still haven't managed to pay the deposite on the accommodation for our little break.

Anne and I had a spot of lunch at Craigmiles cafe Largs, busy place.
Then investigated a little walk outside Kilmacolm at Knapps loch, but it proved a bit scrappy, through bracken and overgrown tracks.
So nothing there for adding to my web site, shame, the Loch is nice.

Some recent photos here.

Later about 4pm went for a quick ride on the MTB, Glentane and lower downhill then back for tea about 6pm.

Going to phone Spain again shortly to finish the booking, maybe.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Trail rerouting

Recently I got some info on a walking track along the river Ayr starting near Muirkirk so thought I'd go over there and see how it was developing.
Went along the railway toward Glenbuck but the track is far from finished so ended up on the road and then at Glenbuck discovered the open cast mine has gobbled up part of the Long Douglas trail so ended up carrying the bike 1.5km up to the windfarm .

I'll need to alter the description showing a reroute, trouble is the reroute goes past a rather aggressive farmer, so its a case of "don't go alone" although there is another alternative which I took today but is a 1km push.

Nice outing even so.

View Douglas long route here
Free Web Site Counter
Free Counter