Day 30, 16th June 2011, Uig (Skye) to Ardhasaig (Harris)

We had a very late start with our ride today as the ferry didn’t get into Tairbeart until 11.20.  We had done a bit of planning last night and decided that there were a few things to look at in these islands, and we would spend a day or so doing just that.

You can see from the map that the bulk of the riding was an out and back route on the Isle of Harris.  The geography is remarkably different from Skye, in that the bit that we saw is pockmarked with extremely pretty little cirques.  The country is wild and spectacular.  We rode to a pure white sandy beach on the Atlantic Ocean at Luskentyre, and while I find few foreign beaches come close to what is on offer in Australia this one did, though it was a bit cool for swimming.

The glaciated landscape otherwise looks remarkably similar to the country in the NSW highlands around Mt Kosciusko, gorsey, with a lot of jumbled rock.

Riding on the main road was relatively easy, there was only one very steep climb. The secondary roads are a bit of a roller coaster, but around each bend there is another secluded little bay or cirque. 

We have seen quite a number of bicycle tourists today.

Roz had been given the name of an up-market B&B and restaurant just north of Tairbeart by a friend, but we had not intended staying there, as we thought it might not fit our itinerary.

However, on returning to Tairbeart we asked at the Information Centre about other options on the road north to Stornaway, and there were only a couple of B&Bs, neither of which were answering their phones.  There are no pubs, and no places on the road where we could buy food.

So we blew our budget and booked in here at Ardhasaig House, which is beautiful.  We could have ridden further, but had no idea of what was there, so some things are meant to be.  Only 52km for the day.

Every week or so on these trips we end up spending much more on accommodation than we would normally, and because these are always somewhat unusual circumstances, our occasional expensive stops are usually great and varied.

Normal spending using B&Bs with ensuite and cooked breakfast, a snack or two and dinners out means we are spending around 100 pounds a day, and living very well.

We had a discussion this morning on the ferry about just how far we can go, and decided that the town of Ullapool where the ferry from here on the Isle of Lewis docks, is our turning point.  From there we will meander down to Newcastle to catch a ferry to Amsterdam.  Zoom out and then scroll to see the route on the map.

View 16 6 2011 Uig to Tairbeart in a larger map


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