Friday, June 23, 2017

Ride to the Sun....and back.

We first heard about Ride to the Sun in 2016. The ride starts from Carlisle, and heads North to finish on Cramond beach which is a few miles North of Edinburgh. Riders can leave whenever, but the goal is to get to the beach in time for sunrise.

Our plan was to ride to the beach, grab a few hours sleep, then ride back to the start. 200 miles in 24 hours.

Tom and I arrived in Carlisle on Saturday around 6:30pm and after chatting with a few folk at the start, we were away for 7:20 pm. Our last big (100 mile off road) ride had an average speed of under 7 miles an hour. We were a good deal faster than that on the road with skinny tyres!

The miles quickly passed. We paused for a photo and a snack in Ecclefechan. Not long after we caught up with "Pyro" one of the Bear Bones Forumites. We rode along with him for a few miles and chatted.

At Moffat we stopped for tea and more food.

We arrived at Moffat, though didn't hang around long as the midges were about. Though we did have a cup of tea.

As we headed up the only hill of note on the route, the Devil’s Beef Tub, dusk fell and we turned on our lights. Though Tom's rear light had disappeared since leaving the car, so he had to stay alongside or in front of me for the rest of the night.

Dusk fell, but it never really got dark.

Outside the now empty Crook Inn in the Tweed valley a DJ is playing some tunes, we listened to a few beats whilst filling our water bottles.

One more drink stop on the outskirts of Edinburgh.

Then it's heads down for the last few miles to Cramond. We were pleased to have ridden the 100 miles with a moving average of over 15mph.

Shortly after our arrival our friend Alasdair McLean arrives, and we all adjourn for some well earned food.

After eating Alasdair heads off home, and Tom and I find a comfy looking bit of grass near Cramond Kirk and throw our tent up.

After four hours sleep, it is time to get up and head back to Carlisle.

Alasdair had suggested an alternate route back, but my GPS routing insisted on sending us via the Edinburgh ring road which you are not allowed to cycle on. So it took longer than it should have done the first few miles. Nearing Peebles, we decided to retrace our previous route.

The ride back was into the wind, and wow it was hot, but what a pretty part of the world.

By the time we arrived in Moffat for the 2nd time in 24 hours, we were cooked. Cold drinks and ice lollies needed.

A final photo at Gretna Green before the last few miles to Carlisle.

We arrived back in Carlisle almost 24 hours after leaving, having ridden 210 miles.

All that was left for the day was to drive back home in time for sleep, then school and work on Monday.

Thanks to Fraser Maxwell, Gary Cameron and the rest of the people who helped put on such a great event.