The simplest things provide the most compelling case for build back better. Luxury, to me, is not defined by material goods, but by the very elements that make life beautiful: friends, nature, travel and the joy of two wheels…
Filmed in June 2019 on locations around Loch Etive, The Pierhouse Hotel in Port Appin and the Isle of Lismore in Argyll, ‘Distance’ is the follow-up to ‘Wild About Argyll’, which was released in 2018. In his latest film adventurer and round the world cyclist Markus Stitz reflects on his solo bikepacking adventures in Scotland and how they help him cope with the social distancing measures during the lockdown imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Alighting the Sleeper Train at the highest, remotest station on the West Highland Line, a group of cyclists head off on an opportunistic wintry journey to ride the old-established network of gravel drove roads, only to find themselves bogged-down exploring the alluring voids in between. That’s why they’re called push bikes, after all…“
We watch a lot of videos over here, yet few come close to this level of perfection! This is the Postman:
“Clinging to the frayed edges of the ragged shores of the Isle of Harris, a singletrack path navigates its way above cliffs, around bays. Three friends make the trip to not only ride the Postman’s Path to Rhenigidale, but find out more about its history.
Until a road to the village opened in 1990, the path was the only overland link between Rhinigidale and the outside world. Kenny Mackay – the last postman to walk the track shares his stories – tales of community, survival and love.
They leave with a deeper understanding that this trail goes beyond being a simple physical connection between two places. It symbolises the emotional and practical ties to the landscapes humans call home.”
Brady Lawrence from Seattle was in attendance for Grinduro Scotland, where he made this recap video that really captures the vibes at these races. Who’s going to Japan and California?
Grinduro Frame Builder Event Format
The Bicycle Academy (TBA) put the Grinduro Scotland frame builder competition format together 3 years ago as a way of creating a platform for frame builders to showcase what they do. It’s an opportunity for builders to work to a tight brief, but at the same time to be playful and creative with bike design. They get to make their own idea of a perfect bike, to keep for themselves, something that doesn’t happen as often as you might think.
And now here they are! The most daredevil group of daffy frame builders to ever whirl their wheels in the WACKY RACES. Competing for the title of Grinduro’s wackiest frame builder. The bikes are approaching the starting line.
First, is the TBA GXC driven by Tom Sturdy. Next is paratrooper Will Barcode on the TBA Splat Grav. Flying through the air is the Rad Roamer piloted by Ted James. Maneuvering for position is Andy Carr on the Spoon Customs Fat Tracker and right on his tail is Pi Manson on his Caledonian Carrier.
Sneaking along last is the unmistakable Petor of Dear Susan Bicycles riding his award-winning ‘Mike Rotch’…
“Grav, Grav. And double Grav!”
Olly, a professional videographer and mountain bike guide made a video showcasing riding the trails of Torridon, Scotland.
What happens when three friends, stay in two bothies in Scottish Highlands while bikepacking 160km and 4300m ascent? Watch this video to find out.
This video was created to support Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland. Watch as a group of friends bikepack the Cairngorms in Scotland.
“Only a short distance from Scotland’s capital Edinburgh, East Lothian provides the right ingredients for bikepacking adventures. At 39 miles (63 km) the Go East Lothian Trail is perfect for families, microadventures and long day rides. The route is suitable for gravel, mountain and e-mountain bikes, and can be ridden in all seasons.” See more at Bikepacking Scotland!
Fabric takes us on a wild ride during Scotland’s Grinduro.
Ortlieb takes us on a trip to the Dirty Reiver 2018, a 200km dirt road race through the border region of England and Scotland.
The Braemar Mountain Festival takes place March 1st-4th in the highest and most magnificent mountains in Scotland in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park. Check out more information at the Braemar Mountain Festival website.
Looking for a different kind of dirt road race in a totally different landscape? Grinduro Scotland returns this year, with registration now open. Head to Grinduro for details and check out our Reportage from last year’s event in the toolbar to the left.
The latest from Bikepacking Scotland transplants you to the Wild About Argyll Trail, Scotland’s first long-distance bikepacking route. The route totals 655 km (407 miles.)
For those of us who weren’t able to attend Grinduro Scotland, Giro made a recap video for us to enjoy on this Friday morning. Don’t forget to see Kyle’s coverage in the related sidebar for more!
Finding Friends on the Isle of Arran at Grinduro Scotland – Kyle Kelley
Words and photos by Kyle Kelley
You can read race reports all over the internet about Grinduro Scotland and that’s exactly why I’m not going to give you that here. It was Scotland, so of course, it rained! It was on the Isle of Arran, so of course, it was beautiful! It rained, so of course, it was muddy! And did I mention… it was Scotland, so of course, we drank whisky!