What a fabulous day!
We started at our previous nights accommodation in Symington, South Lanarkshire, and immediately we were greeted by strong westerly winds which tried their hardest to blow us into the middle of the road. We were both frightened at the prospects of facing this for the next few hours. Fortunately, after a couple of hours they abated but we were left very apprehensive of their return.
Our route followed minor roads and country lanes towards Livingston and the countryside is amazing - autumn is trying to make it’s presence felt with the very early stages of leaves changing colour. In a couple of weeks here it will be stunning.
Livingston presented a few problems with intricate cycle paths and minor roads culminating in the industrial part where - guess what - it started to rain! Oh such blessings.
We continued to work our way toward Edinburgh and for part of the time we actually rode on the A89, the major non-motorway route between Edinburgh and Glasgow, and just a tad busy! As we approached Edinburgh we were close to the end of the runway for the airport and planes were taking off seemingly just above our head - a fascinating experience of little innocuous cycles challenging Jumbo jets for the ability to transport one or more people to their chosen destination. We decided we would sooner be on our bikes!!
Then came the highlight of our day - cycling over the Forth Road Bridge. I hope some photos below do it justice but what I had forgotten was that there are THREE bridges over the Firth of Forth, two for road traffic and one for rail ( which is probably the most iconic) All in their own way are just magnificent and it reminded us of our riding over the Pont de Normandie in France some years ago, but today was even better - just an amazing experience.
We had been hoping to meet up with Shirley and John for lunch in a cafe they know in Queensferry but unfortunately our route took us away from that location which was near the rail bridge. However, they met up with us in Inverskargill where we patronised Greggs ( not the best in the world - but hey when you are really hungry …)
Our route then took us around Dunfermline and into the countryside again after some climbing. What a wonderful area culminating in a long descent towards Loch Leven and Kinross where we were to spend the night. Annette was in her element on the downhill section just letting herself go with free abandon!
We found our hotel and we were somewhat cream crackered! That is the reason for me doing tonight’s blog - Annette is tired out but she was magnificent today in the way she tackled the winds, the climbs and the distance so, I’m afraid dear reader you are putting up with me - and I know the standard of the blog is not the same! My eyes are closing as I write!
Of course I started off by heading this blog as a Record Breaking Day - I almost forgot - it was! Our furthest distance cycled ever for us of over 58 miles, the fastest time over 40 kilometres ever, the furthest north we have ever ridden and the only time we have seen three major bridges in such close proximity - certainly a day to remember.
I have to say a big thank you to Shirley and John for releasing us of some of our luggage thus making our cycling somewhat less demanding - without that support I doubt that we would have achieved what we did.
We stayed at The Thistle b&b - a small but friendly pace where the owner gave us a bottle of Proseco to celebrate our journey so far. A lovely touch.
Day’s Mileage: 58.56m Total mileage to date: 733.94m
Day’s climbing: 2,675ft Total climbing to date 30,463ft
lots of love
Bob and Annette