Tour of the Cairngorms – Day 1

Blair Atholl to Kingussie

Iain had somehow acquired a stomach upset, so it wasn’t a done deal that he’d be on the ride. However, we set off after a quick (and late) breakfast in the water mill cafe. The first 17km were alongside the A9 on quiet back roads, then the old A9, now a dedicated cycleway, and ultimately across the busy A9 and up into the hills.

The next section to Loch An Duin is a 7km climb up increasingly remote countryside. Malcolm managed to break his chain, necessitating a workshop stop, then we tackle the single track section on the steep slope beside the loch.

Once past the loch the estate track resumes and we pass another two large lochs as we make progress down Glen Tromie.

The track goes gradually downhill and speed is high. On the tarmac we find an adder trying to warm up.

Emerging from Glen Tromie into Strathspey we pass Ruthven Barracks before finishing for the day in Kingussie. Iain has made it, Malcolms bike is still working, and we arrive just before the rain starts! Just under 60km done – same again tomorrow.

Overview/inspiration on  Today’s route: 58 km, 786m of climbing.