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Old 11-13-2012, 10:54 AM   #151
Loop
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Just spotted the thread today, fantastic! I lived in Inverness for a while but unfortunately didn't have a bike at the time. Going back up from "sunny" England in the New Year for a couple weeks of drifting about on my bike. Can't wait.

Keep 'em coming!
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:46 AM   #152
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Nope your right Windmills....legislate off the roads to so say reduce accident stats........sorry for the hijack Matt
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Hey Matt,
just checking back in to see how you are doing.
Well done on the test part 1 (of 759...). If I was cynical, I might think that they are making it so complicated, and expensive, to get a bike licence as some sort of deterrent. Surely not?
Safe miles mate!
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Old 11-13-2012, 06:46 PM   #153
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I'm slowly getting through the thread, re-activating photos. I'm done for the night though. Post #45 has 30+ pictures in it which will have to wait til tomorrow.

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Hey Matt,
just checking back in to see how you are doing.
Well done on the test part 1 (of 759...). If I was cynical, I might think that they are making it so complicated, and expensive, to get a bike licence as some sort of deterrent. Surely not?
Good on you for ploughing through all that crap.
It sure was different in my day, I think my test took about 10, maybe 15 minutes at the most... but the price I have to pay for that is being veeery old. :)

Safe miles mate!
Thanks man. I think though to be fair, not everyone's test experience is as drawn out as mine. I was just unlucky in that regard.

There's no question the variety of tests on offer is needlessly complicated though. I'm just glad I'm old enough to pick Direct Access. It's the simplest one of the lot.

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Just spotted the thread today, fantastic! I lived in Inverness for a while but unfortunately didn't have a bike at the time. Going back up from "sunny" England in the New Year for a couple weeks of drifting about on my bike. Can't wait.

Keep 'em coming!
Thanks man. Inverness will be one of the locations I visit next year hopefully (it has a bridge!). Been through a few times in the car.

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Nope your right Windmills....legislate off the roads to so say reduce accident stats........sorry for the hijack Matt
Education and entertainment is the goal of the thread so no problems there!
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:15 AM   #154
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Just blundered onto your thread and I'm hooked!! Day trips are great and give lots of ideas to those who want to set up a base for a while and then branch out to a different destination daily. Thanks!
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Old 11-15-2012, 04:51 PM   #155
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Just blundered onto your thread and I'm hooked!! Day trips are great and give lots of ideas to those who want to set up a base for a while and then branch out to a different destination daily. Thanks!
Thanks man. I'm off the next few days so I should be able to get more of the photos fixed. There are quite a few!

Where is it you're from?
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Old 11-15-2012, 05:36 PM   #156
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Stunningly beautiful. Thanks for posting.
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Old 11-20-2012, 04:30 PM   #157
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Matt.....New York.......did a bit of car driving in Scotland a few years back. Came up past B'ham, dinner in Glasgow then B & Bs in Port William(? I think it was) and a nice one on Skye. Loved that place. Then over to Edinburgh for a day and a half and finally roll back down into England. I'm itching to get over there with a bike. Ride during the day and relax with a wee dram in the evenings. Your experiences lead me to think that an interesting approach would be to choose a good B & B or small hotel which is centrally located to a network of good day rides. Then use the lodgings as a place to to roost at night, reducing the need to carry a heavy load of gear. Just tools, water, snack, and of course....rain gear. Looking forward to your continued reports.
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:04 PM   #158
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Matt.....New York.......did a bit of car driving in Scotland a few years back. Came up past B'ham, dinner in Glasgow then B & Bs in Port William(? I think it was) and a nice one on Skye. Loved that place. Then over to Edinburgh for a day and a half and finally roll back down into England. I'm itching to get over there with a bike. Ride during the day and relax with a wee dram in the evenings. Your experiences lead me to think that an interesting approach would be to choose a good B & B or small hotel which is centrally located to a network of good day rides. Then use the lodgings as a place to to roost at night, reducing the need to carry a heavy load of gear. Just tools, water, snack, and of course....rain gear. Looking forward to your continued reports.
New York? You'll be the only person looking to come over here for the better weather then. Hope you got through Sandy unscathed though, in all seriousness.

Yeah Scotland is small enough that loading up the bike with a ton of gear isn't totally necessary. A handful of well chosen locations to stay for a day or two will give you access to the whole country.

Fort William (with an 'F') is one such place and hopefully when I do a full tour of the country next year that's how I'll be doing it.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:56 PM   #159
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Hey Matt.....sorry to have spelled "Fort William" wrong! Tough to proofread my own stuff! And thanks for the good words re Sandy. Me, I was fortunate to live far from the devastation so here there was just a bit of a breeze and a few periods of heavy rain but no damage at all. The coastal zone, though, they got kicked in the bollocks. There are still folks there without electricity or even a roof over their head. I really like the idea of not having to bring a full camping kit to Scotland and just working out of one or two bases. Sounds brillant. One of these summers.....which for Scots means about half an hour in August?
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Old 11-22-2012, 03:13 PM   #160
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Finally got the thread up to date with the photos so for all the late comers that have only seen the first few pages, there are a load more pictures for you to see.


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Hey Matt.....sorry to have spelled "Fort William" wrong! Tough to proofread my own stuff! And thanks for the good words re Sandy. Me, I was fortunate to live far from the devastation so here there was just a bit of a breeze and a few periods of heavy rain but no damage at all. The coastal zone, though, they got kicked in the bollocks. There are still folks there without electricity or even a roof over their head. I really like the idea of not having to bring a full camping kit to Scotland and just working out of one or two bases. Sounds brillant. One of these summers.....which for Scots means about half an hour in August?
Glad to hear you're safe. I've been to NYC and loved it and the people. Sad to hear so many are having such a tough time there. I'm also guilty of thinking New York = Manhattan. So apologies for my ignorance there!

Summer is long gone by August, man! The nice days are in May these days. After that it's just storms.

And funnily enough, the most consistent month for nice, sunny days this year so far has been October!
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Old 12-24-2012, 10:26 AM   #161
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Hi Matt--
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I don't imagine there's much riding in Scotland during the winter, eh? Looking forward to your reports next Spring.
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Old 12-24-2012, 10:42 AM   #162
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Indeed, hope your not getting battered to bad with the rain and wind at present
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Old 12-26-2012, 03:25 PM   #163
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scotland at 45nph

Hi Matt, I have just read your ride report over a couple of days and very enjouable it is. I live in the scottish borders near Kelso and head north as often as possible and your threads have made me rethink my travels, as of next year I am going to try some of the roads you have travelled instead of blasting through to get up north, as I have done for the last 30 odd years. Hope you pass your test soon and hopefully we may meet up on the road sometime.
Cheers Davie
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Old 12-27-2012, 07:26 AM   #164
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Howdy dude.

I was in Scotland once, but not on a bike. I found it to be an amazingly scenic place which I am determined to return to.
Thanks for posting your pix, to remind me I need to get back over there.

I was in Glasgow (OK but crowded, and I was only there for one afternoon & night), Inverness (MUCH better than Glasgow_ again- wasn't there long enough to really enjoy it), and we were up on the North coast at Kyle Of Tongue- where we spent a solid week, just hiking and driving around. The best thing was we were there in the last days of October into November- so no one was there... and I mean NO ONE. it was quiet to the point of loneliness. Barren but beautiful. We saw Dunnett Head, and the big Sea Stacks to the west, saw guys surfing in full wet suits on tiny cove beaches, and LOTS of wildlife.

Scotland (for me) was, in a word, amazing.
Revisiting it thru you RRs is sweet.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:23 AM   #165
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Originally Posted by Blader54 View Post
Hi Matt--
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I don't imagine there's much riding in Scotland during the winter, eh? Looking forward to your reports next Spring.
Thank you very much! Hope all is well with you.

I actually had a great Christmas. We had the whole family together for the first time in years. I also got these from my fantastic girlfriend:



No riding for me in December. The weather is too erratic for my tastes. While it hasn't been too bad here, it often changes without much warning and can have you riding in terrible visibility. Spring is not too far away though!

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Indeed, hope your not getting battered to bad with the rain and wind at present
We're lucky here. Falkirk is quite sheltered from the coastal weather. So yeah it's been raining, it's nothing like the scenes on the news.

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Hi Matt, I have just read your ride report over a couple of days and very enjouable it is. I live in the scottish borders near Kelso and head north as often as possible and your threads have made me rethink my travels, as of next year I am going to try some of the roads you have travelled instead of blasting through to get up north, as I have done for the last 30 odd years. Hope you pass your test soon and hopefully we may meet up on the road sometime.
Cheers Davie
Awesome! Some of the best biking roads in the world are in Scotland. It's a shame so many miss out.

I actually need to get myself down to the borders sometime. Only ever passed through that part of the country.

Aiming for March to pass my test. Would be great to meet some folk from the site.


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Howdy dude.

I was in Scotland once, but not on a bike. I found it to be an amazingly scenic place which I am determined to return to.
Thanks for posting your pix, to remind me I need to get back over there.

I was in Glasgow (OK but crowded, and I was only there for one afternoon & night), Inverness (MUCH better than Glasgow_ again- wasn't there long enough to really enjoy it), and we were up on the North coast at Kyle Of Tongue- where we spent a solid week, just hiking and driving around. The best thing was we were there in the last days of October into November- so no one was there... and I mean NO ONE. it was quiet to the point of loneliness. Barren but beautiful. We saw Dunnett Head, and the big Sea Stacks to the west, saw guys surfing in full wet suits on tiny cove beaches, and LOTS of wildlife.

Scotland (for me) was, in a word, amazing.
Revisiting it thru you RRs is sweet.
It's a small country but there are some very remote areas. Nearly everyone lives in the central belt with the rest of the country much quieter. That's how I prefer it.

A mix of biking and hiking would be the perfect way to see the country I think. A yacht and a helicopter would be nice as well though.




Merry Christmas everyone. And have a happy new year!
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