Home > lejog > Lejog day 27. Tain to Tongue. Almost there!!!!

Lejog day 27. Tain to Tongue. Almost there!!!!

69 miles!

Today was our favourite so far. Stunning scenery and miles seemed to fly by, under blue sky and slight tail wind.

Started very cold in tents in a forest. So brrrrr that even the midges who had taken up their usual flysheet ambush locations were too cold to move! So at least there was some silver lining to the approx 5°c … Put on double merino longjohns under my cycling tights and similar on top. Breakfast was a cheese roll and pro plus!

Tain was all still closed as Sunday morning, but we found a shop/cafe in Ardgay. By then was warm and we’d done 17 miles. We had been planning on dropping back to 40 mile days as soon much time before our train back from Thurso which is booked for Wednesday. However we checked the weather forecast again and it looks like about to get nasty, so we changed plans and decided to make for tongue today instead of camping at the Crask Inn, and so arriving in Thurso a day early to take advantage of possible last of the nice weather. That meant we suddenly had 51 miles left today, instead of about 25! Phoned the poor house in Tongue to check we could stay there, provisionally, took off layers down to short sleeve top and tights, and set off.

Ncn 1 continued to be v nice, and the brief part we were on the A9 convinced us we were making the right decision to take the inland route, even though it’s longer. Before Lairg it took us away from the main road, which we watched go high up the other side of the valley, whilst it took us on little quiet lane next to the river and falls :)

The large part of the day was the high moorland crossing. We gained the altitude easy enough and then, oh my, oh wow, oh how have I never been this far north before? Why hasn’t everybody??? Perfect single track road through miles and miles of heather and bracken and moorland and mountains off to the west and rivers and lochans and trees and blue skies. Tried taking some photos but the landscape was too big and deep and intense for my poor skill and phone camera to even begin to capture. And the 40 miles just flew by. I felt like we were wearing 1000 league boots, each pedal stroke seemed to take me so far.

Met couple of other cyclists coming the other way and had good chat.

Cycling today has just been incredible, almost didn’t want it to end. Even then hills didn’t seem hard, even though was down to bottomest gears in places, just kept pedalling and we got up and over them.

Stopped in Crask Inn and had cake and drinks, but I was really itching to keep going it was so pleasurable! Plus we still had miles to go and it was already mid afternoon.

We got our average moving speed up to 10mph for first day this trip!

Up and down couple hills and then up and then …. THE SEA!!!!! We’d actually made it to the north coast!!!

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Gorgeous sunset as we descended down into Tongue and along to the poor house bunkhouse, where our very nice host lit the wood stove and we feel very cosy and accomplished and blessed :)

Thurso tomorrow and then John O’Groats the next day!!!!! So close!!!

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Early morning exercise – spin drying the tent!

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Who knew these still existed?

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Can always tell the ones Vince took whilst still cycling ;)

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Crask Inn

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The sea!! The north coast!!!

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First signpost we’ve seen. Suddenly feels so close!!!

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Categories: lejog
  1. October 5, 2015 at 10:31 pm

    love the photos, its a beautiful part of scotland there!

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