Thursday, 3 August 2017

Borders Ride

Borders Ride
Lockerbie to Tweedbank. 2 August 2017

Two passengers got off the train at Lockerbie, both with bikes. I asked the other guy if he would take my picture for the ‘start of the ride shot’. We cycled to the edge of town in search of a Welcome to Lockerbie sign, but the only sign was to the industrial estate. He took this picture of me next to fields.

Then he was off on his fast road bike back to Edinburgh. 
Look how much luggage he has. Zilch.

My plan was to cycle north west through the Borders to the end of the next railway line, at Tweedbank. It would be on minor roads, following Dryfe Water into the hills, then descending alongside Ettrick Water. I’d made notes on the stages of the journey.

This suburban looking garage on the outskirts of Lockerbie housed an old tractor.

Great sculpture. Surprisingly, the plaque says: In Memory of the 90th birthday of Her Majesty the Queen.
 
Raspberries and wild flowers everywhere.
Climbing up into the hills

My ride coincided with the last day of  one of the UK’s most demanding cycling events – the quinquennial London Edinburgh London ride. This year there were 1500 riders, many of them international. The community cafĂ© at the tiny village of Eskdalemuir was a Control Point for cyclists heading South, providing 24 hour support for riders.

 
The cyclists looked exhausted




Setting off for London
Cyclists on the LEL approaching me, as I ride North. When I heard the event was overlapping with my plans I was a bit alarmed. I was worried I might have a mass of riders sweeping down on me. But I think I just met the last few.
Two miles up the road in this remarkable remote valley I came to Samye Ling Tibetan temple.

A party of cheery Nepali tourists arrived at the same time as me 




So strange seeing all this in rural Scotland




Tibetan Tea Rooms

It's a huge place.

Peace Garden



Up into the high country




No traffic except huge timber trucks that used the full width of the road, so I had to scramble off when I heard them coming.



Watched by thoughtful looking sheep



Scottish thistles

Circular sheep pens

This farmhouse has prayer flags in the garden.



Dog on guard
Some lovely houses round here.




Stopped at this pub for a coffee.


Getting the harvest in.




Then the rain started. My expensive waterproof jacket kept the water out for about 40 minutes. After that I just got wet.

Selkirk in the rain. A hilly town.



I turned down a minor road on the route back, only to find it blocked a mile further on. Wish they'd signposted it properly at the turn and saved me unnecessary miles in the rain.
'End of ride shot'. Tweedbank platform, waiting for the train back to Edinburgh. Great ride!

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Borders Ride

Borders Ride Lockerbie to Tweedbank. 2 August 2017 Two passengers got off the train at Lockerbie, both with bikes. I asked...