What a weekend. The weather gods have been kind to us in the shire, basking in unheard of temperatures of 20 degrees and we're only a couple of days short of October. After a lovely family day on Saturday, Sunday was set aside for biking duties, and a wee jaunt up a mountain fitted the bill perfectly.
So, after a reasonably early start, I picked up young Lloyd and then the not so young Julie on the way to Arrochar to tackle our target for the day, Ben Arthur, better known as the cobbler. The cobbler climb starts at sea level, so with 881 metres of climbing ahead of us, we set off, accompanied by some friends from my old bike club, Stuart, Les and Gavin.
|Jules carrying her bikes 'enduro stylee'|
The cobbler, whilst not quite qualifying as a Munro as it's a mere 100ft short, is a very popular wee hill, especially on Glasgow bank holiday weekend, at times it was like braehead shopping centre, but at least the people weren't annoying fat weegies... You get the odd ignoramus, but in general most walkers out on the hills have a good attitude to mountain bikers these days, with the usual mix being one of inquisitiveness and incredulity at the same time.
Realistically, the last 150 metres of so is pretty much not rideable up or down, as we knew on the way up, but the summit had to be achieved on such a stunning day, as the views promised to be excellent. And excellent they were.
So, the descent....
As I said, most of the first section was unrideable, as it's too steep and on man made steps, which you really can't get any braking traction on. After that, the fun began. In between Julie and les' numerous punctures, the descending was fantastic, and only maybe a dozen or so water bars and gorges that require the bike to be lifted over. The last section down through the forest was an absolute hoot, with Robin, Young Lloyd, Stuart and myself riding pretty close together and having a right carry on. Brilliant,
As ever, I never really got many pictures on the descent, as it's always the last thing that's thought of whilst you're doing what you enjoy most, I try to make a point of doing it, but it doesn't always work out. And if you stop to take pics, there's always a chance of getting stuck behind a mincer. Nightmare.
A cracker of a day in the autumn sunshine, followed by coffee and cake. Long live summer.