Yay!!! 10 Degrees of Latitude began today, just north of Tongue, Scotland.We woke early to light rain, 25mph winds from the south and 50 degree temps. Not the best weather for riding – but we loved it. I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. We’ve spent the past 9 months planning for this day and it was awesome to hop on the saddle and get the adventure started.
We rode down the A836, a narrow two-lane road that is windy, rolling and gorgeous. There was a lot of climbing today; we rode up and down 4000 feet of vertical over 58 miles. It was amazing how much the terrain changed as we rode; changing from sparse and rocky on the coast to lush and moist to the south. The road was empty, just us and the sheep, so we had ample opportunity to look around and soak up the beautiful countryside.
The strong head winds and rain kept our average speed down today, but we planned the first few days to be a bit shorter specifically for these types of eventualities. Our legs were fresh and our spirits high so the rain had little effect on our morale. It was tough to be down when the ride was so pretty.
A shout-out to our logistics van: the driver is Bob (Adam’s pop) and the navigator is Flora (my Gram). It was awesome to have them on our heels today. They were there when I had a sudden hankering for a ham sandwich, and when we needed our raincoats. It’s awesome to have them around, and they are having a ball doing it.
On to Inverness tomorrow and a dip in Loch Ness following the ride. If we don’t blog tomorrow it is because we got eaten by Nessy.
A shout-out to the Bridge Hotel in Bonar Bridge Scotland, especially John who operates this historic hotel in northern Scotland. There is a picture of us with John above. The hotel is under construction and there is room for considerable expansion in the back area to accomodate musical performances and large gatherings. This family operated hotel was located right on our route and John’s homemade lasagna was exquisite.