Friday, 25 December 2015
Our first stop was the Castle esplanade, where we enjoyed fine views to the north and south (a dusting of snow was visible on the Pentland summits). We then had a rapid descent of Ramsay Lane (very steep) to Market Street and Waverley Bridge. Next came a double traverse of Princes Street – westward as far as Castle Street, then back the other way to Waterloo Place. There were a few buses and taxis around, as well as a couple of council cleansing vehicles, but almost no other traffic.
In Regent Road, we paused to look at the Stones of Scotland Monument (a circle of 32 stones, one from each of Scotland's local authorities, commemorating the rebirth of the Scottish Parliament). Then came the hard work of the day: the ascent of Calton Hill. At the summit, we lingered to take in the panoramic view. This was our main refreshment stop, with mulled wine, home-made mince pies and chocolate truffles all in evidence.
We left the hill by way of the path-cum-steps that goes down to Greenside Church. We then weaved through the back doubles to St Marks Park and the Water of Leith, then headed west via King George Park, Canonmills, Stockbridge and Dean Village. After the recent rains, the Water of Leith was unusually fast, and the path was muddier than usual.
At Roseburn, several members of the party went their separate ways. The remnants of the company headed back to town via Haymarket Terrace, West Maitland Street and Rutland Square. By the time we reached the Usher Hall, only three riders remained, so we declared the ride officially over. Judging by the feedback along the way, it was another successful event.
Leader, report, photos and map trace: Mike
Monday, 21 December 2015
We've got our traditional Christmas morning ride this coming Friday (25th). You're very welcome to join us if you are free.
One of the advantages of cycling on Christmas Day is that the traffic is relatively light. We will take advantage of that to visit parts of the city centre where we might not otherwise cycle. I can't tell you our exact route just now, but it is likely to include the Castle, Princes Street, Calton Hill, and nearby districts. The total distance will be about ten miles.
Although we'll take the ride our usual relaxed pace, be warned that there will be a couple of steep climbs (including the aforementioned Calton Hill), a number of cobbled streets, and possibly one or two short flights of steps to negotiate.
Time and place
We'll leave at 10.30, from our usual meeting spot at the north end of Middle Meadow Walk. We'll return to the Meadows by 13.00 at the latest. Obviously, there will be no lunch stop, and nowhere to pick up a coffee en route, so you might want to bring a snack to keep the hunger pangs away.
Like all our runs, this one is "just turn up" - no need to book in advance. It's open to all, so feel free to bring your pals or family members.
For those who have better things to do on Christmas morning, our first ride in 2016 will be on 9th January.
Saturday, 12 December 2015
Thanks to Mike for planning a ride that took such a long and meandering route to get us to our lunch stop. Yes, we could have got there much quicker in less miles - but that wasn't the point. A short run back to the finish was also appreciated on a cold and grey December afternoon.
Map trace: Jim