Wetter than an otter’s pocket

Starting in Kenmore we are heading to Applecross, its been raining, it is raining, it’s wet and pretty soon, so are we. We climb into the gloom, did I mention it was raining?

No pictures on the way up, did I mention it was raining?

Rivers are up, this is one of those days when there is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong choice of toys. That said, this little ditch, which I reckon is the Allt na h Airighe Riabhaich becomes the river Applecross gets steepio and whilst the top section needs some more water to make it go, lower down there are some falls, mostly hidden from our sight, but there is some gradient in there for sure.

A couple of hours later we arrive at the Applecross Walled Garden Cafe for a warm, change of clothes, hot drinks and some food to fuel us for the return leg, the same trail but in reverse, Chris assures us it flows better heading back, I am sceptical! The lads wearing waterproof socks empty them out cos when they get real wet, they keep the water in as well as out, in these conditions, pretty pointless, it had been raining, it still was to be fair, you’re getting the picture? We leave the Cafe and I am shivering, despite layers of dry cloths and I have to say I am apprehensive about the return ride. Mark spots my shivering and delves into his bag, pulling out a down gillet, telling me to put it on, I don’t argue. I feel the benefits immediately, cheers bud, lifesaver. As we start the climb back up I have some core temperature, thankfully.

The down that had entertained us so much earlier in the day is a push on the steeper sections, visibility is low and yup, its still raining.

As the terrain flattens out the cloud lifts and the views return.

Turns out, the ride does flow better on the the return leg, the biggest issue of the day turned out to be the wildlife rather than the terrain, on both legs of the ride we encountered a flock of highland shaggy cattle, stubborn, confident, they would not and did not move, they stood their ground, so we moved, to the side a little and around whilst Chris cooo’d in soothing tones, The sunshine and blue sky certainly lifts the spirits somewhat, as did the long, last, fast descent to the van.

Scotland: Highland Odyssey – H+I Adventures (mountainbikeworldwide.com)