Annan – New Galloway – Ayr

 

After the euphoria (and associated celebration) of crossing the border into Scotland we started out late (again) yesterday. We didn’t start pedalling until 9:20! And guess what? We didn’t get into Ayr until after dark. That’s one difficulty of doing this as a group, We can’t seem to get going in the morning.
We started out after a hearty breakfast at Tara and Dave’s (gluten-free sausages for me!) with the intention of sticking together for another hybrid day – a mix of A roads and NCN. We made good progess on the A roads to New Galloway for lunch but we then split.
Ian and James were put off the NCN by two things: a) by the lady in the tea shop saying it didn’t exist and b) the lady in the Post Office saying that she knew someone who’d done it on a mountain bike and had to carry it a lot of the way!
Anyway, I felt I needed to at least try.
It turns out that the first 4.5 miles were tarmac and the rest was forest road, a bit rough in places but you could easily pick a way through with a road bike. The Moulton clawed its way up the slopes like a goat!
Once through to Glentrool village the terrain changed and consisted of very long inclines followed by long descents. I measured one of these. At one point I didn’t pedal for 2.5 miles. Mind you, I’d earnt the pleasure.
There was a stiff northerly wind in the afternoon which was cold. Fingerless gloves were not enough!  I think Ian and James felt it more on the A roads than I did in the forest.
There was futher evidence of the ‘I’m totally exhausted so I will behave oddly’ syndrome (low blood sugar) when James decided to start walking, but forgot to get off his bike first! He fell off. However (for his mother, Jane’s sake) I am pleased to report no damage to body or bike. He is also behaving quite normally now (well, normally for James).
James also got his fist puncture . . . of his life… in the afternoon. Ian showed him what he had to do.

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