....I know I've done the miles. Well, most of them.
Sunday we did 30 miles to Stonehaven. It would have been forty but the roads were treacherous. They were all right right up until we got past Lairhillock and then we split from some friends going a slightly longer route which looked like sheet ice. Which it was. For 7 miles. On road bikes.
This is the way we should have gone.
basically from Mile 12 until 19 it was sheet ice. After that until just past 20 (you can see it on the elevation) it was sheet ice with about 4 inches of snow. It lay so thick that my mud guards were shaving snow off my tires going up that bloody hill. If you stood on your bike and tried to jig your way to the top the bike slid from under you and you landed on your face. It took us 1hr 20 mins to do the 12-19 miles. It took us 30 minutes to climb that bloody hill. Thing is, I've done Braemar to Aberdeen -3 in a sodding snow blizzard and it wasn't anywhere near that difficult.
At Mile 25 where we come off the main road we were going to cut across for the return journey back to Aberdeen, but we decided with that being a fairly unused road, more sheet ice would ensue so we decided that going through Stonehaven and up the Number 1 Cycle Route would be easier but longer.
So we're cycling past the last mini round about in the town and I heard the mystical sound of large glasses of Hoegaarden being poured all the way from the Marine Hotel, situated most picturesque in Stonehaven Harbour. So we stashed our bikes round a mates house (Cassa Sergio) and followed the call.
Our intention was purely refreshment, but just as we were about to leave to catch the train (honestly, I'm not making this one up now) Who rocks up to the Pub but Don Sergio his Bella Donna and Bambino* to watch Ireland getting Gubbed (Rugby technical term) by Wales.
We left Aberdeen at 9.15am. Didn't get back until about 8pm and 7 hours of that was sitting in the pub. Was in bed for half nine which is probably why I can't sleep now.
It was worth it.
And here's the route we actually done:
* apologies to Italian speakers everywhere. I'm fairly sure one of those words (if not all) is not Italian.