Monday, 15 September 2008

Pedal for Scotland

My alarm went off at 5:30am on Sunday morning, 14th September. It was still dark outside but it was time to get up as myself and Dean and Gillian would be taking on 'Pedal for Scotland', a 55 mile bike ride from Glasgow to Edinburgh. We set off from home on the first part of our journey, about 5 miles away in Victoria Park in Edinburgh. He we loaded our bikes onto a lorry and got on the bus to Glasgow, along with many other riders taking part in the event. On arriving in Glasgow we were reunited with our bikes and we made our way to the start line. It was quite chilly to start with, but at least it was dry and the sun was out! The organisers set groups of cyclists off every minute or so. We led out our group of cyclists as we set off through the streets of Glasgow. What an amazing feeling to have cyclists as the majority on the roads, pushing cars out of the way! Great!

We reached the first station after about 8 miles. We stocked up on a few essentials and then carried on along the course. The second 'feed station' at mile 23 included home baking which seemed to go down pretty well with all the cyclists. We of course felt obliged to try some home baked treats! At just over 30 miles we reached
Linlithgow Palace. We were making good progress, with the previous section being quite flat, allowing us to get some fast speeds. The route was a mixture of quiet roads and cycle paths, with some great views along the way. We could see the Forth Bridges in the distance as we headed towards South Queensferry, cycling at times along some beautiful woodland roads. Passing under the Forth Road Bridge and into South Queensferry, we were at 47 miles and had just under 10 miles to go. The hills were becoming a little more challenging now! The final section followed the cycle path into Victoria Park, where we'd set off from early that morning. As we passed under the footbridge, the path narrowed and was lined with people cheering as we covered the last few hundred metres and crossed the finish line! We did it, Glasgow to Edinburgh by bike, and we were handed shiny medals. What a great day!!! We just had to cycle home now! Thanks to Dean and Gillian for being great cycling buddies! I reckon Edinburgh to St. Andrews next year!

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