20th Anniversary Year

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Friday 20 June 2014

An evening ride for the summer solstice

We had a special evening ride tonight to mark the (almost) longest day. And what a lovely evening it was: clear, dry, and warm (21 degrees at 8 p.m). About 20 of us, led by Jim, set out from the Meadows just after 6.30 pm.

Our route was an eclectic one. We started by heading south through the Grange, then on through Morningside and Craiglockhart to join the canal at Allan Park. At Harrison Park, Logan decided he would risk letting us invade his front room for a refreshment stop, which we duly did. We then rejoined the canal for a quick run into Fountainbridge, where the bunting had already been put in place for Saturday's Canal Festival.

Our route then took us past the Conference Centre, and down into the Grassmarket (see photo). We continued down the Cowgate to Holyrood, then along Abbeyhill to Regent Road, where we paused to look at the Stones of Scotland Monument. This circle of stones, one from each of Scotland's 32 local authority areas, was created in 2002 to mark the rebirth of the Scottish parliament.

Next came the highlight of the ride: the ascent of Calton Hill. We lingered at the summit for a while, gazing at the excellent view of the Firth of Forth and the Lomond Hills. But by now it was nearly 9.30 pm; the light was just beginning to fade, and a cooling breeze had sprung up. So we switched on our lights and donned our yellow jackets for the next leg of the ride.

This took us down Easter Road, where two impatient motorists did their best to spoil the pleasant ambience, but failed. At Thorntreeside, we took the Restalrig railway path through Seafield and on to Leith Links. The final leg was along Water of Leith, Goldenacre and Telford paths to the Craigleith path junction. Many of the group had peeled off by this point, and so, at 10.20 pm and after 18 miles, we declared the ride officially over. It was a very successful run -  and an excellent way of spending a summer's evening.

Leader: Jim
Report, photos and map: Mike

View 20-Milers Summer Solstice Ride in a larger map

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