A beautiful sunny September morning, I set off early again at just after 7am.
I begin by following my favourite route out of the village. An early morning mist lies in the valley. I like the way the pylon wires line the sky in the photo above.
I think these are pheasant hens sunning themselves on the road and verge.
The folly rises above the mist as though it's on an island.
First cow photo for this trip, they're ignoring me today.
Cows and folly and mist
The big stone , I turn right.
This farm sign has always caught my eye. The sheep in the field behind were posing beautifully for a photograph I couldn't resist.
Dewy cobwebs in the hedgerows.
An early Autumn view.
The first view of Ben Lomond (the mountain on the left with the "shoulders") .
Whenever I've been this way recently the distant mountains have been hidden by cloud. It was lovely to see them again.
Ben Lomond getting a little closer!
On a normal two hour run I would usually turn off fairly soon after this point. This morning though I have the luxury of four hours cycling time and can just keep going; a good feeling!
After here I have a long descent, too enjoyable to break for photos especially when I know I will be seeing more impressive views soon.
I pass through one of the local villages and stop to buy a mars bar for breakfast.
After another climb out of the village this is the view I am rewarded with.
A close-up of the houses peeping over the hill with the mountains behind.
Wheee, down again! It's quite a hilly route but I'm not as unfit as I feared I would be after failing to do any serious exercise in the last four years since having children. Climbing the hills doesn't bother me; I just drop down to the lowest gear I find comfortable. The downhills which follow are a just reward. We are very lucky to have such an excellent network of minor roads within easy cycling distance.
Looking back over the Firth of Clyde and the mountains of Argyll after making another climb.
The bike shot (not a very good one)
A last look at the view.
Eventually I reach the entrance to the cyclepath and follow it home for the final few miles. I don't have it to myself today; it's later in the morning than normal and people have been encouraged out by the fine weather. Many "Good Mornings" are exchanged -we're all so happy that it's stopped raining (in August 2009 we had over twice our normal rainfall for the month (interesting weather summary here!)) and the sun is shining!
At last, two cows pay me some attention on the final climb from the cycle path up to our village.
Home for just after 11am.
Wow! I'm impressed ... and speechless! ... the views...your stamina...
I couldn't even begin to cycle for 2 hours, let alone 4! Lovely photos - no wonder you go out on your bike, though, it's all so beautiful.
Such beautiful pictures and I love the third one with all the mist and folly!
Have a lovely week,
Hi Anne, I have really enjoyed visiting beautiful places with you on your bike. The scenery around you is gorgeous and so green for this time of year. I can see that you have had a very high rainfall this summer. Your views are all so scenic. You must have amazing energy to bike ride so much. Very good for the old fitness levels though.
What a perfect day out!!! Your photos are absolutely stunning, the more I saw the more I wanted to see. The mist in the distance. It must have been a wonderful sight. Cycling through the countryside is a great way of seeing it and experiencing it. Scotland is such a beautiful country!
Hi and thank you for your comments.
I just wanted to say that I am not a particularly fit cyclist by any means! I just enjoy getting out into the countryside and cycling is the best way - walking is too slow, a car too fast.
If I can encourage any one to dig their bike out the shed and just have a go again, that would be great - you might just find you like it!
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