Our Tour de Hebrides

This is a great Hebridean bike tour.

No huge mileages, you can travel ultra-light and it is easy to organise at the last minute when you've seen the current weather forecast - that's important because travelling with the wind at your back is gives a much more pleasurable experience.

Our trip was all last-minute.  On the Saturday we decided to go, so I fixed up the bikes with racks and bar-bag holders.  On Sunday we packed and waited for the evening long-range TV weather forecast.

On Monday, we started riding.  We were home again Friday evening.

If the route interests you, I suggest you start and end at Oban where there's long term parking in front of the Youth Hostel. (Open to read more)

There's a good cycleway (Sustains 78) to the Corran Ferry if you wish to follow our route.  Alternatively take the CalMac ferry to Mull, and then cross back to the mainland at Fishnish or Tobermory.

The only 'major' island our tour didn't visit is Lewis, simply because it didn't fit the schedule.  You could add it with an out-and-back from Harris, but the main road to Harris is not one I'd rush to cycle.  With two extra days on the mainland, you could ride through Torridon to Ullapool and take the CalMac to Stornoway.

Our trip started and ended at home in Strontian and breaks down like this, with links to Strava.

Day 1: 64 ml / 4049ft to Lower Breakish, Skye (where we stayed with friends)
Day 2: 48ml / 2156ft to Tarbert, Isle of Harris
Day 3: 54ml / 2500ft to Claddach, North Uist
Day 4: 54ml / 1824ft to Isle of Barra (with diversion to the excellent airport cafe)
Day 5: 54ml / 2044ft to Strontian, Ardnamurchan

If you're tempted to try this, then I'd urge you not to use panniers.  Keep your load light.  A bar-bag and light pack on a rack (as we did) or better still a saddle-bag you are all you'll need.  Then you'll not be hauling necessary junk around with you and, should the wind blow against you, won't be pedalling into it with two sails either side of you catching the wind and blowing you backwards.

Created with flickr slideshow.


Douglas Wilcox said...

Great trip Simon :o)

Simon Willis said...

Thanks Douglas- it was certainly one to remember.