Sunday, 17 September 2017
We've got one of our Extra rides coming up on Saturday (23rd).
Given that our group has been on the road for 13 years, it's inevitable that we often do the same rides many times. Today's run will be different: a completely new route that we have never before done as a group. What's more, it will take in some particularly attractive countryside with above-average scenery. It will essentially be a circuit of the eastern fringes of Midlothian, including Mayfield, the Tyne Water and Crichton Castle, with a pub lunch in Pathhead.
But be warned. The ride will be quite a bit longer and faster than most of our runs, and there will be a fair bit of climbing. Although we'll mainly be riding on quiet roads, there will be one short stretch on a busy main road, and another where we might have to walk along the pavement.
We'll meet at Fisherrow Harbour in Musselburgh in time for a 10.30 start. The route is about 35 miles from Fisherrow back to Fisherrow, but if you are coming from central Edinburgh, you will need to add about 12 miles to the total. Depending on progress, you can expect to get back to Edinburgh between 4 and 5 pm.
As always, there's no need to let us know in advance whether or not you will make it for this ride. Just turn up on the day.
Saturday, 9 September 2017
Today's ride saw us head south-west to Colinton, followed by a big loop round to Leith and Craigentinny in the north-west. Our route took us through a number of Edinburgh's many parks, and saw us navigate several flights of steps.
riding through to Glasgow for the following day's Pedal for Scotland; the weather was quite pleasant - so the relatively low turnout was a bit of a mystery. At least it meant we only needed one group and we did have a couple of new faces. We left the Meadows behind and threaded our way through the backstreets of Morningside and on through Braidburn Valley Park. On through Colinton Mains Park, Spylaw Park and bypassing Colinton village, we rode through the curved Colinton Tunnel. That tunnel so reminds the writer of a scene from the film "The Italian Job", that he now finds it impossible to ride through it without whistling, "We're all members of the self-preservation society". Each to their own! We followed NCN75 before joining the Union Canal towpath. A short run along the canal and we dismounted to walk across the Slateford Aqueduct. Once across, we negotiated the steep flight of steps down to the Water of Leith path. Past the cemetery and allotments, across Gorgie Road and into Saughton Park. Major works in the park resulted in a detour that brought us out on Stevenson Drive. A twiddle through the backstreets of Saughton took us past Murrayfield Stadium and into Roseburn Park. Across the busy Roseburn Terrace and another flight of steps got us back on the Water of Leith path. We left the path at the rear of the Britannia Hotel and climbed up to Belford Terrace. From there a short ride saw us arrive at the Gallery of Modern Art - our lunch stop. The cafe was the quietest many of us had ever seen it. We quickly got served and enjoyed lunch sitting in the garden making the most of the sunshine.
Map trace: David
Monday, 4 September 2017
This month's ride will provide a chance to explore some interesting bike routes within the city. Under David's leadership, we will be heading first to Colinton in the south west, then taking a big loop all the way round to Lieth and Craigentinny in the north east.
The total distance will be approximately 20 miles. Much of the route will be on quiet roads and well-surfaced paths, although a few of the paths might be a little rough in places. There will be a couple of short sharp climbs, and also one or two short flights of steps to negotiate, but no other particular difficulties.
For lunch, we will be stopping at one of our more popular venues: the modern art gallery in Belford Road. The café there serves an excellent range of snacks and light meals. But be warned that it gets quite crowded at times. If you want to avoid a possibly long queue and a wait for a table, consider bringing a picnic instead. The gallery has plenty of picnic tables on its spacious terrace.
We'll meet at our usual place at the north end of Middle Meadow Walk. Please get there in time for a 10.30 departure.
As always, the above details should be regarded as provisional. The meeting point and start time are definite, but we reserve the right to change the route and lunch venue according to circumstances.
Saturday, 26 August 2017
Photos: Glenn and Michael
Map trace: Jim
Napier University has asked us to post some information about a research study they are undertaking, and which they are looking for healthy male volunteers to take part in. If this is of interest, please reply using the contact details shown below.
Hannah Lithgow, a PhD researcher in Exercise and Health Sciences at Edinburgh Napier University, is currently undertaking a research study in healthy males aged 18-75 years. The aim of the study is to investigate the effects of exercise on vitamin D metabolism. Vitamin D is linked to numerous health conditions, such as Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, depression, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and many more. Exercise and physical activity have been linked to vitamin D status, and so in this study they are investigating whether a single bout of exercise could be a means to reduce the development of health conditions through vitamin D metabolism.
The study involves four visits to the Sport and Exercise Science facilities at Edinburgh Napier University at Sighthill. You will benefit from a full cardiorespiratory fitness assessment (called a VO2max test) and feedback on your vitamin D status.
If you are interested in taking part, or have any questions regarding the study, then please contact Hannah Lithgow by telephone (0131 455 5716) or email (h.lithgow[ATT]napier.ac.uk).
(Replace [ATT] by the usual @ sign.)
Monday, 21 August 2017
We've got another of our Extra rides this coming Saturday (26th). This is a rather special event, as it will be in honour of our much-missed friend, Logan Strang, who passed away earlier this year. The ride, which will be to Merryhatton, was on of Logan's favourites and one that he led for us several times. In fact, it was the very last ride that he led, exactly one year ago this week.
Our route on Saturday will be 45 - 50 miles. There will be some short stretches that might be busy with traffic, but there should be no other difficulties. Most of the route will be on quiet roads or well-surfaced paths, with only a few gentle hills.
Please keep in mind that these Extra rides are longer and faster than our usual "second Saturday" runs. We aim to maintain a slightly higher average speed - although not so fast that you can't keep up a conversation. Most of our riders find the pace comfortable, but if you haven't cycled for a while or are unsure of your abilities, you may prefer to give this ride a miss.
Our lunch stop will the Merryhatton Garden Centre, where there is an above-average café serving a good range of light lunches (soup, sandwiches, baked potatoes, etc.) as well as more substantial meals. As always, you have the option of bringing food for a picnic lunch if you prefer.
Time and place
The ride will start from Fisherrow Harbour in Musselburgh. Please aim to get there in time for a 10.30 departure. Fisherrow is about six miles from central Edinburgh. There are toilets available at the start point.
The ride is likely to finish between 4 and 5 pm.
Remember, you don't need to book in advance for this ride. Just turn up and enjoy what promises to be an excellent day's cycling
Saturday, 12 August 2017
Thanks to Jim for leading us on a pleasant ride. Thanks to the weather for drying up after a wet start to the day, and thanks to the power cut coming after we had all got our lunch.
Map trace: Jim