After a slow start his morning – Callum really didn’t want to get up! We packed up our kit and headed to the cafe next to the ferry port along with the guys we were leaving today.
I dont think I realised just how much I needed a cup of coffee and a sausage roll but we were all feeling a lot chirpier as we left for the ferry!
After a rushed goodbye to Doug Stuart and Ed we had a 40 min ferry journey in which we established we’re all flipping knackered!
So we took the day at a wonderful pace!
We headed slowly north trough Harris in unfortunately cloudy but relatively dry weather for most of the day. Stopping off at a lovely tapestry gallery with tweed of Harris, some beaches and the most wonderful little cafe down by croft 36!
We’d been recommended this place by the guys coming the other way a few days earlier and as we headed down the road towards it every cyclist we passed (and a few drivers too) just shouted some variation of ‘head to the cafe, its fantastic!’ ‘The scones are great’ ‘the coffee is great’.
They weren’t wrong! The espresso was beautiful and the scones were amazing! But I couldn’t help eyeing up the rest of the food! The potato and fennel salad and garlic and hallumi bread looked incredible, as did all the cakes and sandwiches, I would love to go back there one day with more money and time! Even the building itself was so homely and interesting with stone walls and a scattering of teapots, and the staff too just made it a little paradise!
Anyway, we eventually dragged ourselves away and slowly headed into some light rain. We found a bus shelter for lunch and had a grand talk with a local who told us more about the area and wild camping options, by this point we were only 16km from Tarbet and this guy gave us a quick warning about a massive hill we would have to climb.
We decided we’d rather tackle it today than tomorrow and risk missing the ferry and so as the rain just got harder and harder we had around an hours slog up the most rediculous never ending hill yet!
It was both vile and kind of exciting to complete without walking the bike, we were all pretty chuffed with ourselves! I dont think I’ve hyperventilated that much since I was kicked out of Sensei Sherry’s training session years ago and I felt pretty shaky by the end but we did it!
After the hill it’s all down hill to the ferry port apparently, which was a relief for my lungs but my bikes brakes dont really work in the rain so it was a tad interesting heading down!
We were all soaked to the skin, my brakes were pretty minimal and the rain wasn’t giving up so we ended up pitching tent at the first okay-ish area. We could probably find somewhere nicer further down but I think we just needed to get changed and dry and warm.
I’m now lying here in the tent with the two guys fast asleep and ITS NOT RAINING! If we’d hidden in a cafe for a while before the beast of a hill we’d probably all be dry right now! But hey ho!
Dinner soon I guess, and only 4km down a hill tomorrow! Depending on spirits and weather we might go and explore north Harris before the ferry, or possibly just explore a coffee shop! We’ll see! But this is the end of the cycling I guess, we’ll have a very smelly car again tomorrow! Not sure if I’m happy or sad about this but my knees could sure do with the time off! 🙂