We set off and headed through Holyrood Park (I had a brief mechanical emergency when the cable on my front brake slipped through the bolt and became effectively useless - thanks to Handy Alan and Andrew who helped me get it back in working order) and then Willowbrae and down through Mountcastle (crossing over the A1 - always a challenge with a big group) and then onto Fishwives Causeway and into Portobello. We went gently along the length of the Promenade - it's only recently that the "no cycling" signs have come down (even though it had long been agreed by the council that they were wrong) and "cycling OK" signs have gone up. There was a Doctor Bike van doing good business half the way along.
We then carried along the main route into Musselburgh, turning off at the harbour and then along the water front to the River Esk. On the far side of the river we continued on past the cadets' hut and found the large concrete arrow - apparently used in the war to line up bombers on training runs on targets in the Forth. Someone pointed out that the Germans weren't silly enough to place large blue arrows pointing towards the targets in the war... We also met a friendly dog who brought us a ball and invited us to throw it for them. Repeatedly.
|Beside Musselburgh Racecourse
|View from Fa'side hill
After lunch (which was very efficiently delivered), and a group photo we went down Cowpits Road and onto the River Esk path down to Musselburgh, where we retraced our route slightly along the coast, before taking the Brunstane Burn path (newly surfaced with tarmac for most of the route) and then joining Route 1 home.
In total it was about 27 miles - a bit longer than our normal distance, and it showed (we were back quite late, at about 5pm, even though we were spared any waits for punctures this time).
|Fa'side hill from Musselburgh Racecourse
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