20th October 2018

A scooter run to Cullen (201 miles)

This was the most amazing day. These are the maximum temperatures from the Met Office’s website.

19.1°C15:00 BST Aberdeen Airport
18.8°C14:00 BST Lossiemouth
18.1°C13:00 BST Aboyne
17.9°C16:00 BST Kinloss

I left the house on my wee scooter just after 10.00 and as usual took the back routes over the Black Isle to get to Inverness.

This is just behind Munlochy looking to Munlochy Bay. The colours are very autumnal.

I went to Tesco at Inverness Retail Park to fill up with petrol and then headed to Nairn by Ardersier. This is just outside Ardersier.

I stopped to get a couple of pictures at the junction before Nairn where the Ardersier road joins the A96.

It was then through Nairn and just outside I went onto the back road to Brodie. All the time its trying to avoid the busy A96 with my 125cc engine. This wee loch is near Brodie Castle. I think it is part of the estate.

Brodie Castle

I bypassed Forres and headed to Kinloss, then out to Hopeman and Lossiemouth. It was getting hot now. I was in the wrong clothes. I had my heavy winter fleece, my cold weather motorbike jacket instead of my leather one and my lined thermal trousers. That’s what you normally wear in October. I was stewing in my own juices.

This is above Hopeman.

That’s Morven in Caithness showing in the middle, 38 miles away.

This is Lossiemouth.

I didn’t go to Elgin or Lhanbryde and before Fochabers headed out to the coast and stopped for my lunch between Portgordon and Buckie. There were some new roads for me getting to beyond Lhanbryde.

I then pushed on through Buckie, through Findochty (pronounced Finechty), through Portknockie and then to Cullen. These are villages we love and have explored. I went round the three antique shops and didn’t buy a thing.

I then used new roads to me to get to Keith.

Keith was a rather nice place.

And more new roads to get to Dufftown. I bypassed Dufftown and got onto the road to Tomintoul which I used for the first time back at Easter. I branched off though after Glen Rinnes to Glenlivet. This is Ben Rinnes. We are at 900 feet above sea level here. A wee bit further on the road got to over 1000 feet.

This is the Packhorse Bridge over the River Livet.

This is a Chinese Satnav bought from Ebay for only £25 running igo Primo. It performed flawlessly. I had prepared the routes on Google My Maps last night and saved as KML files. These I loaded into the Satnav. A fantastic way of preparing a route and navigating.

When I rewired the scooter earlier in the year I wired this USB plug into it. It powered the Satnav well. I had a single earphone bought some years ago that velcros into the helmet. I could connect into the sound easily using the jack extension socket showing. Really pleased with how it all worked.

Here is the satnav mount. I had bought a plastic one but it was useless, the mirror kept working loose. I ordered a piece of 22mm stainless round bar on Ebay which my friend Sean Rasmusen machined, drilled and tapped. I also bought, on Ebay a small length of 3mm stainless flat bar and drilled and bent it. The round bar was joined with a M8 flanged button head allen bolt. It is a great mount. The satnav sits well and the mirror no longer works itself loose.

This is the Google My Map for the day.

And I made a slight detour to get these pictures of the Bridge of Avon and the entrance to Ballindalloch Castle.

A wee bit further on, overlooking Cragganmore, I stopped to have something to eat. It was so hot I had to get my jacket and over-trousers off. As usual a car then pulled in and then a lorry. I’m a peace and quiet seeking old man.

This was all new roads to me. I went through Cromdale and just beyond it came over this bridge. This is the River Spey.

I didn’t go into Grantown on Spey and was back on familiar roads. I headed out over the Dava Moor and went by Dulsie Bridge. I quickly stopped to take pictures. The light was going out of the day and I had my lights on.

Just a ‘wee’ stop.

And I couldn’t resist taking yet more pictures of the Culloden Viaduct.

I then went back to Tesco. I bought a couple of things for my tea and lunch tomorrow. And I put in more petrol. 5.44 litres took me 156 miles. That is just over 130 miles to the gallon! I don’t really like scooters. It is well patched up. It is ugly. But I love it. It is an amazing wee vehicle.

I cut over the Black Isle via Drumsmittal, Munlochy, Mount Eagle and Culbokie. This is nearing Mount Eagle. The camera compensates for the dark. I was trying to get pictures of my LED lights.

I got home about 7.00. Just another great day. The forecast is downhill for next week so a good thing I made use of the day. God is good.

Added a week later – Saturday 27th October

Temperatures recorded at the same times as the table for last Saturday; again data is from the Met Office’s website.

4.5°C15:00 BST Aberdeen Airport
5.7°C14:00 BST Lossiemouth
4.4 °C13:00 BST Aboyne
6.6°C16:00 BST Kinloss

And this is what I looked out to this morning. There was ice on the garage slope and the cars were frozen over. A bitter day.

It’s winter! Only in Scotland could you get such a difference in Saturdays one week apart.