Monday, 10 October 2011
Riccarton Hills Bathgate Hills.
I know.The title has put you off already.The mere mention of Bathgate or Broxburn or certain areas in Scotland tend to put people off who know the location...or think they do.Why is that?You can go to so called remote areas up north and be standing in someone else,s waste droppings outside a bothy like I was a few months go.....But that's all right because its wilderness.Its a type of subliminal unintentional snobbery I suspect.You can have a fantastic day,s adventure here of a weekend after a week,s hard graft in Hall,s pork pie factory in Uphall.And you will need some quality R and R after that.And stand on no ones ouput as you admire the view.This area is civilized This area has flush toilets.
This is a double post.On the same day a mere mile over the first high ridge from Grangemouth you enter a different land.Out of sight out of mind.Cliches are cliches for a reason....most of them ring true.Tellingly,you cant see Grangemouth from here.Its like the difference in the Wizard of Oz between the black and white drab brutality of Kansas farm life and the technicolour beauty of Dorothy,s new end of the rainbow,tornado utopia where her house lands.
From here it was easier cycling past mid Tartraven and Cathlaw to Cairnpapple Hill,the highest point around.Another fantastic Bike/ hill climb is to Park At Beecraigs.The circuit of Wester Ochiltree,past Tarhill, up Binny Craig then round to the Winchburgh bings...Up them...then Cairnpapple hill. Then Up Cockleroy to finish.Its an outstanding bike and hill day.An unknown classic yet treasured by the few that,s completed it..
Hats off to them.(Mr Valley,Its a new area for you to bomb round on a bike.Plenty of hill climbs for a young tiger like you.Lock your bike inside a field below each hill though)
Its at its very best in harvest time.Glad I caught it this year as harvest was a short affair due to all the autumn rain.