Monday 24th July 2023

A scooter run over Glen Loth, to Syre and then down through Strath Naver (140 miles).

I know I have done this run several times and recorded it several times. I apologise for the repeat but it is a lovely run and always different.

We have had terrible weather this July. Southern Europe may be in a record heatwave but we certainly are not. It has been a very wet, cold July. However the rivers and lochs have been needing it after a dry winter and a very beautiful June. The forecast for today was to be dry towards the East, so off on the old scooter.

I now feel incredibly well after my prostate removal three months ago. I am even continent! My hernia still causes discomfort but I can manage it and today it was no trouble. I went down to Alness to the bank and then to Morrisons for petrol. I then headed out to Invergordon.

Below is parts of wind towers being landed at Invergordon.

This is the view up the Cromarty Firth. I saw that view every day for thirty seven years when I was teaching in Invergordon Academy.

I stopped just outside Saltburn to get these two pictures. The first is looking out to the Sutors of Cromarty and the second is to the speed limit signs just outside Saltburn where my daughter and son-in-law live.

I came onto the A9 at Kildary. I usually go onto the back roads by Scotsburn but today wanted to push quickly North. This was a wee stop at the start on The Mound on Loch Fleet.

It was then a drive through Golspie and Brora and to the turn off up Glen Loth. Now I could see from a bit away that there was rain cloud over the Glen Loth area. About a mile or two up the road the drizzle started. This was not on the weather forecast! I stopped at the bridge here and had my picnic lunch before deciding whether I go on or not. I do not enjoy driving in the rain.

Well, after lunch I decided to be a hero and push on into the drizzle. On reaching the top, for the first time up here, there were no great views to the North East. You can see the rain showers in the photo.

But, to the North West the weather was looking a lot better, so push on.

By the time I got down to Kildonan Station the rain had stopped and for the rest of the day it was dry. At Kildonan I went left onto the Haladale road which goes directly North. At Kinbrace I turned onto the Syre road. I stopped at the cemetery at Kinbrace to take a few photos. I love this road from Kinbrace to Syre.

Ben Loyal starting to show beyond Loch Badanloch.

Ben Loyal is a bit nearer. The roads were very quiet till Altnaharra.

Syre. Here you turn left to go down by Loch Naver to Altnaharra.

The start of Loch Naver. It is really beautiful.

Further down Loch Naver. The mountain is Ben Klibreck. There were a few sunny intervals as I went down the loch.

I reached Altnaharra and this is the old disused church.

Ben Klibreck with the cloud on it.

Strath Vagastie takes you from Altnaharra to Crask. I stopped mid-afternoon on the top of the strath to have something to eat.

The cloud was rising and falling on Ben Klibreck.

I’ve mentioned before my hatred: Creag Riabhach Wind Farm. This used to be such a wild road. I could cry.

After eating I headed to Crask, then Lairg and down to Bonar Bridge. I stopped to use the public loo.

I then pushed onto Ardgay and went up over the Struie to get home. There was no one stopped at the viewpoint so I stopped once again. The mountain in the middle of the first photo is Ben Klibreck with the cloud now off it. It looks very far North (nearly 30 miles).

I then did the 11 miles back home arriving about 4.35. A braw day. It was just lovely to be out on the scooter and not feel wrecked at the end of it. The last time I did a long run, with Billy my brother, I felt totally wrecked and it was a shorter run than today. I am getting better and stronger.