Craig and Mark were out on the bikes to scope some new trails around Glencoe and more importantly testing out the new Santa Cruz Highball 29er; Craig's first introduction to 29er'dom.
A whiz up the A82 and re-introduction of the suicide deer on several occasions saw us out in the cold, rain/sleet and wind at the bottom of the Devil's Staircase. Ten minutes in the car saw the worst of it over and then a mad dash to change saw us off up the hill, the Highball running nicely over the rough stuff.
The high pass was 'negatively baltic' and a quick pic of the 'Bookle' in all its approaching winter glory saw us hightail it off down the hill towards the Ice Factor and a warm coffee.
A nice roll and sausage and warm up in the cafe at the Ice Factor saw us checking the winter gear (nothing worth drooling over I'm afraid) then off up the road to Glencoe village and some new trails to keep us off road.
A pleasant spin up the Glen off road most of the way saw us finish off the ride in style with time to spare. The 29er is a lovely bike but I'm still musing over whether it is a trick to get us all to replace our bikes and new kit or a real step forward in technology and progress.
The snow was lying in the Glen and with more cold weather approaching, it may be time to get the ice axes sharpened for next week....luvely jubily :)
Meanwhile, over at the sharp end, Bill was delivering an MBLA Trail Cycle Leader training course around Mugdock Park with staff from Ardmay House and Fiona from Cycle Scotland. The weather was wet and bedraggling on Saturday but improved on Sunday.
All candidates had a great couple of days learning the requisite skills to lead groups on TCL terrain and headed home with grand plans to get out and ride more...what we should all be looking to do.
Well done to Fiona, Tara, James, Ben, Lincoln and Andrew for keeping with the programme over a hard two days.