Monday, December 31, 2007

Heroic biking

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Frosty by the River Ayr

Giant Hogweed

Went down to the river Ayr with Graham today thinking it would be mild and windy.
It was 5degc in West Kilbride but by the river it was more like -2degc and I had not put on a base layer... silly me!
It wasn't very long before I warmed up a blink or two of sun and a couple of climbs and I was fine.
After yesterday's rain I was really surprised how much ice was in the river and on the paths, I think Ayr area had clear skies last night and a sharp frost, even the frozen mud was slippy.
We did three hours along the river and investigated a bit of Barskimming track before heading back to Stair Inn for Tomato and Turkey soup, just the job for a cold day.

View pictures here.

Video of a visit here

Similar route description here.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Blair and Fairlie

Sunset over Hunterston

The frost was on the way out this morning, when I got up it was raining and well above freezing.
It didn't get light till 9am but the clouds cleared and it looked quite promising by 10am.
Anne has a bit of a cold so we went for a gentle stroll around Blair estate near Dalry only to get caught in a shower, fortunately nothing too bad but that's a lesson relearned, never... ever trust the sky.
Despite the shower we still managed a nice walk then went along to Dalgarven Mill for lunch.
Back home for 2pm, too early for me to stay indoors, so I went off up to groom the Fairlie single track.
Not much to do there except clear the burn crossing and put a little ramp in over a fallen tree but there was some nice winter sun and a nice sunset so took a few pictures to add to Blair, view them here.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Frosty Cycle

Punishing pleasure MINE!.. alone
tingling cheeks and numbing fingers
sweating body in the winter sun
on top of the world
for a gravity run

Got a bit poetic on top of Kaim hill today
won't happen again!
It was fabulous getting up there, crisp weather just below freezing, sun shining, no wind the ground frozen only little thing spoiling it was a broken seat post but that was trivial. I soaked it all in and it was stunning!!

Some photos here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Cycling the cuts and christmas shopping

Clydeport sunset

It was another cold clear day and I had a plan.
Anne was off to a funeral with her mother so I had the opportunity to get up to Cardwell Bay and buy her a wind chime she'd admired a few weeks back, (admired with a christmas hint).
I put the MTB on the back of the car intending to get up to the Kelly cut above Wemyss Bay and maybe the Greenock cut if the weather held up.
The Kelly cut has been given a face lift and is now free of mud and ruts so gives a great ride round to Cornalees.
The Ardgour fishery cafe was open for a warm up and a bite of lunch before the hill climb over to the Greenock cut.
I expected that side of the hill (north) would be shady but luckily there was still some sun to warm me a little, lovely (cool) days cycle...great again!

Summer video of the cuts here.

Some photos here.

Route description here although I added this bit (route 1) as well

Monday, December 17, 2007

Fairlie to Largs in glorious sunshine

Low sun over Hunterston

What a beautiful day!
Anne and decided to make the best of it with a walk along one of our favourite routes, Fairlie to Largs, trying to get the best of the sun and keep out of the cold easterly breeze.
The walk was lovely, the view over the Clyde Coast was fabulous, not absolutely clear, but good enough for some nice photos. One of them I shot over the top of Fairlie Castle from a different view point, just a few yards off the track and there it was begging to be taken.
We stopped off at Craigmiles Cafe in Largs for lunch then walked back along the shore front to Fairlie with a little detour back up to Fairlie Castle, glad I did I got a lovely shot of low sun over Hunterston.
Great days walk!

View photos here.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Mauchline Gorge & much more

Barony Pit Head

Graham and I had a great day out on the mountain bikes today, down by Mauchline.
We started along the fabulous Ayr River Gorge. Lots to see there, cup and ring rocks, sandstone quarries, the 100ft deep gorge carved by the river, ancient sandstone rock formations, old mill lade, and some nice single track. Can't whack it really.
From there we took a few back roads to Auchinleck house, and a little out and back to the spectacular setting of Wallaces cave. Then across to Dumfries house, recently sold to the nation by Johnny Dumfries for something over £20m pounds. I wonder if he ever goes out cycling, doubt it, he used to be a F1 racing driver?
Last leg had a bit of road work to Sorn so that we could enjoy cycling back along the river Ayr Way single track.
Wonderful day on the bikes.

Video here.

Route description here.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Katys Charity Skydive

Katy's Tandem Skydive

Our daughter had been raising sponsorship from friends, family, and colleagues for quite a few weeks proceeds to go to the SSPCA.
Her objective was a tandem skydive but weather conditions had been preventing the event but last week end, although the weather down in this part of the country was foul, there was a weather window at Strathallan where she was to take her jump so the show was on.
Needless to say Anne and I were a bit nervous about the whole thing but all went well.
After a bit of a wait through the morning she got her tandem jump just after midday. In her words by text measage 'Freefall was brill! but felt sick when the chute opened', well done to Katy and thank goodness that,s over!

Video here soon.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Kelburn MUD!!

Wet and windy today so when the time came to get out and about it was always going to be a wellies and brolly walk. Decided to do a loop in Kelburn cause there's plenty of shelter in the trees up there.
After the summer tree harvesting which ruined a couple of nice little downhill trails I knew there was some ground work going on but I wasn't quite prepared for the mess they've made and on another section of trail too!
What was a reasonably firm trail has been converted to mud, fortunately the worst can be bypassed and the summer should see a bit of grass binding it together but its just a mess at the moment.
I spent some time clearing little bits around the worst of it but next time up there is going to be messy!!
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