This part is a single room separate from the rest of the bothy with a sleeping platform for two or three and its own fire place. We had a ferry to catch, so had a fairly strict time plan to keep to. We decided to take a breather and check our map. In a sense, at least. Join Stefan, Will, Luke and Jordan - the guys behind the film Beulah - as they discuss the ever-popular pursuit of bikepacking, various bike and kit setups, their trip to Cape Wrath, and the experiences of filming by bike. View All Features. The further on we progressed, the more the bad weather came in. It uses old drove roads and military roads and new hydroelectric access roads, all linked by small sections of minor country road and walking paths to create a 354-mile (562-kilometre in new money) route from Scotland’s largest city to the most westerly part of the north coast. After a hot brew and a hearty meal of beans on toast, I enquired to the keeper “how do you get all your supplies out here?” It turns out that they get helicoptered in a couple of times a year! From there, the path became more familiar to me. Publications. The weather was a little overcast, but the water was still. It didn’t seem to hold me back though, and I made it through the Ardverikie estate in record time and was heading up to Loch Ossian. And despite the pain and fatigue I felt, the joy of being there and knowing my body was capable of powering me to the top kept me pushing on and kept me smiling. Exposure lights for their excellent bike lights keeping me safe on the roads and on the right path off them. The wet clothes were promptly hung on the dryer and a quick walk down to the beach was next on the agenda to collect any driftwood for the fire that night. That’s easy enough to get to with two planes and a train: Boston->Dublin->Glasgow->Fort William. Click the link below to learn about each. The evening was now rolling in, so we brought the bikes in (that salty air won’t do my bike any favours overnight) and got a fire set. After work on the Friday evening I chucked my bike on the roof of my car and took the long drive up to Durness. It’s not actually a trail though, but a route. The ride back to the ferry was just stunning. The fourth issue of The Bikepacking Journal hit mailboxes this spring. As soon as you start from the Durness side, you are straight into a steep climb. It didn’t take long to drift off that night! Undertaking a 560-kilometre bikepacking route through the wilds of the far north of Scotland in autumn weather definitely takes a certain mindset. Start Here, Broadly speaking, there are three bikepacking genres to choose from – Multi-day Mountain Biking, Ultralight Race & Gravel, and Expedition & Dirt Touring. Never mind – Crack on to Cape Wrath lighthouse for a cup of coffee and a nice hot lunch was the decision made at that point. The Cape Wrath Trail begins in Fort William which is about 3 hours north of Glasgow on the west coast of Scotland, by bus or train. First, a delayed start pushed us to rethink and turn the route on its head, starting at Cape Wrath itself to remove the unknown of a return home from the far north on the final day. Blue skies and warm sunshine had come out to see us off! The Killin to Callander cycle path gave me some easy, flattish kilometres, albeit into a headwind before hitting the three lochs route from Loch Venachar. Multi-activity 29er for fast, flowy trails, hurtling over (US) Bikes and luggage all on aboard. Cape Wrath. I stopped for lunch with Charlie after the second of these descents, the climb to which had been on an old and very rocky military road. An Turas Mor: Cape Wrath to Glasgow by Bike - BIKEPACKING.com Similarly, the Loch Ossian Youth Hostel is only accessible by foot, so the whole area has this incredibly remote feel to it. Day 3 stats: 225km and 3478m of climbing. On the way home, we both made a promise that we would be back again the following year. And finally, to Charlie. Standing there in the wind and rain, I knew the old me would have been making my excuses already, but in that moment I knew I was ready for this, and I also knew just what completing the journey no matter what now would mean to me. The jackets were packed away, and shorts were called for now. When you live on the south coast, Scotland seems an awful long way away. I rode through a large estate and then on through spectacular glens, beneath mountains, and past solitary dwellings into the growing dusk. High up (Ullapool / Cape Wrath) or lower (Glasgow/Fort William)? A shorter day at 124km, but still over 3000m of climbing. The penultimate section started from Croick Church, possibly one of the most haunting reminders of the clearances, with the names of the families who sheltered there after their houses were burned to remove them etched into the glass windows. Rainspotting – our second film together with Brother Cycles (following Beulah, 2016) – tracks our 84-hour wintry bikepacking ramble through Scotland’s gloomy Grampians. It'll be a pretty informal, light-hearted 30 mins so please come by if you're keen to hear more, or ask us any questions. View The Map, There are some routes that are made classic by their sheer perfection, and others by races. to support us & get The Bikepacking Journal. Cape Wrath Trail Backpacking Gear List, Explained Philip Werner Gear Lists, Scotland The Cape Wrath Trail travels up the west coast of Scotland, beginning in Fort William, and ending at Cape Wrath which is the northernmost point of Britain. Located in Sutherland in the Highlands of Scotland, Cape Wrath is the most northwestern point of the UK. When it comes to bikepacking, there’s a world of options, not just limited to what kind of bike is best, but also about clothing, cooking equipment, sleeping systems - the list goes on. The ride back to the ferry was just stunning. Set it up for XC race speed and a trail centre slayer or set it up for all-day comfort loaded with bags and ride rugged country, bothy trips to Cape Wrath and beyond. It has seen tragedy in its past and its remoteness gives you a sense of tranquillity beyond anything frequently experienced before. Beyond the damn, however, the paths became rough and loose and at times very boggy. This time there was no missing the track. Cape Wrath – 31/08/18 to 02/09/19. Rocky Mountains Horses Travel Paths Destinations Horse Trips Traveling Words Day two was all about climbing. I thought i would share my build process and future plans for it. Well, it is in fact almost a thousand kilometres from where we currently live in Sussex. If you’d like to see the complete list of gear I brought for this, the southern half (140 miles) of the Cape Wrath Trail, it’s detailed in this (linked) gear list post. We all know what the run up to Christmas is like, don’t we? 1. Crammed into a long weekend, this would be tight, with work sandwiching either side, plus the intricacies of the route itself. And not done it all at the same time. By the time I popped out in Aberfoyle the dusk was creeping in and I had around 80km to go until the end. I would be starting having already failed. People have been strapping bags to handlebars and donning backpacks since the dawn of mountain biking, and using their knobbly-tyred bikes to explore remote routes unreachable on day trips. An hour before the film started, we put a shout out for you folks to get creative and sketch one of the bikes, or scenes, from Rainspotting – the sketchier the better – and dangled a box of Outdoor Provisions bars as a Grand Prize. However, you can step on the Caledonian Sleeper train in London Euston one evening and arrive to wild, breathtaking views of the Scottish Highlands from your cabin window the following morning. An Turas Mor: Cape Wrath to Glasgow by Bike - BIKEPACKING.com Naomi Freireich set out for a solo time trial from Cape Wrath to Glasgow on Scotland's An … Hallelujah! The tracks were quite reasonable and the climbs all doable at a casual pace. I awoke a couple of hours later and found that I had drifted off (as had Jack). 33 mi. No trouble whatsoever. Many thanks to GORE Wear for having my back (and legs, arms, feet and hands). The CWT is more of a route than a trail because it’s not blazed or way-marked and because you can connect the endpoints using any sequence of trails, 4×4 tracks, paths, roads, or off-trail segments to connect the two endpoints. My Achilles tendon at my left heel was really painful and the climbing of the day before was evident in my legs. History timeline; Obituaries. On the plus side, we got to spend a glorious afternoon and night on the north coast of Scotland. At 9am, the wee boat turned up and helped us load the bikes for the short crossing. / … You can follow her adventures on Instagram @frikfrak74. Lael, Chris, Erik & Rue explore the High Sierras of California with bikes and bike backpacks. For the support, the selfless gift of his time and patience, and for the stunning photographs by which to remember a truly unforgettable weekend. Trust me. As the night rolled on, we kept the fire going with driftwood and some slow burning firelogs. Arriving late in the evening, I met up with my biking buddy, Jack Kirkbride. Having that positivity to push on when the only reason to do so is that mindset itself; it’s a life skill that doesn’t come naturally to most. This time, we finally got to see all those spectacular sceneries. Set it up for XC race speed and a trail centre slayer or set it up for all-day comfort loaded with bags and ride rugged country, bothy trips to Cape Wrath and beyond. Here I met two separate riders going the other way, the first people I’d met on the trails all day. An Turas Mor: Cape Wrath to Glasgow by Bike - BIKEPACKING.com Naomi Freireich set out for a solo time trial from Cape Wrath to Glasgow on Scotland's An … We decided to take a breather and check our map. Designed to be ridden over a leisurely eight days, its inauguration was a race event, which saw the record time being set at just over four days. What is Bikepacking? As we climbed away from the coast and inland, the midges dissipated and gave way to some light drizzle. Learn More, As important as it is to have a reliable bike and pack as light as you can, choosing the right route is perhaps the key to your enjoyment. We rose with the light, enjoyed a tasty breakfast with our view, and headed to the ferry point, the closest I could get to the end to begin my journey. I’d done it. Learn More, We have ~100 routes on our worldwide bikepacking routes map. Visiting Kearvaig and Cape Wrath had been on my bucket list for a long time. The Cape Wrath Trail runs from Fort William to Cape Wrath on Scotland’s northwest coast, for approximately 280 miles. Home Blog Bikepacking Ruigh Aiteachain Bothy, Glenfeshie. I’d been up in the night needing the toilet and had to hobble. Visit this section to learn how to choose a route, and some insight into navigation. So during quarantine I really wanted to make another project, something off-grid, to get me going to forests, lakes and all the places I wanted. During this period of uncertainty, it has been nice to return to thinking about our more basic needs. Click the link below to find out how to start. A great overnight trip to the Ruigh Aiteachain bothy on the Glenfeshie estate to celebrate a couple of phat boys birthdays. Cick the link to see them plotted or select from the links to the right to filter. We got the bikes packed up and headed out to the pickup point for the ferry. There ware many stops along the way to take in the sites of the MOD buildings and abandoned homes. The Cape Wrath Trail is considered the hardest hiking route in the United Kingdom. Gear that Worked We must have missed it a while back. With their initial plans for an east-west traverse of the Sierras burning down time-and-time-again, they opted for a 300KM circular bikepacking route - upwards, further into untamed country where roads turned to trails… The Cape Wrath Trail is often referred to as Britain’s toughest long distance walk. I could imagine the views would be stunning had the cloud not been so low. We believe travel by bicycle has the power to encourage conservation, inclusivity, and respect for all people and cultures. One after another after another. Stunning. The nearest access point is Corrour Station, the highest train station in the U.K., which is only reachable on foot or on the train itself. Just the faint sound of the sea and wind and the crackling of the fire. Riding along the familiar West Highland Way, even in the opposite direction to the other times I’ve ridden it, felt like I was home already. I didn’t know what to expect. There is no escaping it I’m afraid! Hardtail trail centre mountain bike compatible with 27.5+ or 29 inch wheels. This time, we finally got to see all those spectacular sceneries. It was here I knew I could do it. I really hope you will join us. The bothy is known as one of the best in Scotland. There ware many stops along the way to take in the sites of the MOD buildings and abandoned homes. The jackets were packed away, and shorts were called for now. To Mason Cycles for loaning me the über-capable InSearchOf; truly a bike for all terrain (and I checked this was true over the weekend!). As failures go, this one was certainly a winner. Quick, lightweight 29er modern mountain bike, a genuine multi-activity hardtail. This was our second trip of 2019 to the bothy and again we elected to camp and allow the fellow visitors to sleep in the bothy. And to see the Gallery lit up in all its glory was properly emotional. For me, being warm and dry and knowing I was safe and had food and water simplified the task ahead. The Cape Wrath Fellowship. After work on the Friday evening I chucked my bike on the roof of my car and took the long drive up to Durness. All in, 175km and 3,281m of climbing. I really worried that I wouldn’t be able to ride. As soon as you start from the Durness side, you are straight into a steep climb. Accidentally switching off my alarm meant my morning routine was condensed to 15 minutes of mad panic. It also made me appreciate just how much comfort we have in our lives now, from basic Maslovian needs to our modern lives that increase our scope for travel and communication. Day one can be described as incredible remoteness, tough hike-a-bike, rain, wind, and stunning landscapes. What differentiates this new wave of bikepacking is the specialised gear that’s emerged and the popularisation of Surely the turn onto the path that would lead us down to Kearvaig Bothy was close! Within a couple of miles, a strange building appeared through the mist in the distance. Cycle magazine; Cycle Campaign News ; CycleClips e-newsletter; Velocheer; Jobs; History. With stunning drone shots and a voiceover by Lee, the short film depicts an adventure with a twist. UK official off-road bikepacking routes. We walked on the sand at low tide, climbed rocks, ate dinner with a view, and after a good night’s rest, woke with the sunrise over the bay. BIKEPACKING.com is dedicated to exploration by bicycle. Of course, the best choice for you is very much dependent on what By the time I reached the road again, it was dark. I bought a Cape Wrath from 97 from retrobike. Originally published in The Bikepacking Journal 03, Ditibised is Alexandera Houchin’s extraordinary story of training for the Tour Divide, framed in four seasons…. West Coast of Scotland sounds nice. Mindset. To ride to the end of the trail past my old University haunts, along the Kelvin cycle path, past Maryhill, the Botanical Gardens, and through Kelvingrove beneath Glasgow University felt like such a fitting way to end my ride. Thankfully the track has been partially tarmacked thanks to a heavy MOD presence in the area. Beulah, a collaborative film between Pannier and Brother Cycles, follows their unsupported cycle trip to explore the Cape Wrath track; a journey inspired by a 1970s OS Map Sheet of the most north-westerly part of Scotland. I have heard stories that the sense of remoteness and isolation make you think about life a little more poetically. The bikes were soon back on the roof and we started the long drive back home to Grantown. Nothing my bike couldn’t handle. This day I knew would be tough, with three big climbs before I even got to the biggest of the route, and the highest road pass in Scotland, the Corrieyairack Pass. As we climbed away from the coast and inland, the midges dissipated and gave way to some light drizzle. So much history is attached to these roads, and to be able to ride them still is pretty mind-blowing. The path is not waymarked and has many variations. After checking in with Charlie and deciding on a camping spot for the night, one final small climb of the day was all that remained. Surely the turn onto the path that would lead us down to Kearvaig Bothy was close! She lives in Edinburgh, Scotland, with her husband, two children and two step children, where she works as an IT Project manager. I woke late on day three. Once back at the bothy, we made a brew and climbed into our sleeping bags to warm up. As you descend the track, the stunning views of the bothy open up with an expanse of golden sanded beach wrapped up out the harsh winds by towering cliffs and hills all around. The rest was (almost) all downhill. Multi-activity 29er for fast, flowy trails, hurtling over (EU) Simply put, bikepacking is the synthesis of mountain biking and minimalist camping; it evokes the freedom of multi-day backcountry hiking, with the range and thrill of riding a mountain bike. Yum. Cape Wrath by Fatbike and Packraft - BIKEPACKING.com A film with a twist about a fat bike and packraft journey to the most northwesterly point on the UK mainland, Cape Wrath. I would really recommend bikepacking to anyone who loves to ride a bike. Okay, the use of the word official might not be solidly defined, but here are *most* of the recognised long distance bikepacking across England, Scotland and Wales. Why did it have to be an FKT to be worth doing? Set it up for XC race speed and a trail centre slayer or set it up for all-day comfort loaded with bags and ride rugged country, bothy trips to Cape Wrath and beyond. All that remained was the small matter of what now. 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