2020 Transition Scout Carbon Launch!

More tasty treats dropping, and this is a good one! Transition Bikes new Scout Carbon, and the first of a new manufacturing technique, frame asthetic and peformance. So what’s changed? Loads! Want to skip my waffle? Go straight to the bikes:

2020 Transition Scout Carbon Frame X2 -£2999

2020 Transition Scout Carbon Complete NX – £4299

2020 Transition Scout Carbon Complete GX – £5299

2020 Transiton Scout Carbon Complete X01 – £6299

We are also doing frame/fork and frame/wheelset/fork packages, get in touch for latest pricing but some examples below:

Scout Carbon + Cane Creek Helm Air/Coil – £3599

Scout Carbon + Fox 36 Factory GRIP2 150/160 – £3799

Scout Carbon + Fox 36 P/E GRIP2 – £3499

Add a set of hand built Pro4/DT350 on DT EX511 or Chromag Phase30 rims for £499, onto any frame or pack order.

Right then, still here? This is what’s new:

FRAME FEATURES

Latex Molded Carbon Construction
Full carbon frame made from premium Japanese Toray fiber with a tailored blend of 24T and 30T materials to create the right balance of frame stiffness, strength, and impact toughness. Our unique latex coated EPS molding process allows for sharper frame lines and tighter edge radius control with maximum strength to weight ratio and less wasted material.

Mega Seatpost Insertion
Dropper posts keep getting longer so we combine short seat tube lengths with mega seatpost insertion to help get your saddle completely out of the way.

Tire Clearance
Ample clearance for mud and tires up to 2.6″ width.

User Friendly Cable Routing 

To simplify maintenance and keep your bike noise free, the rear derailleur cable is routed through guide tubes in the front triangle and chainstay.

Frame Protection
We keep your bike rides quiet and your frame safe from damage with fully integrated, flush-mounted rubber frame protection at all critical areas. In addition to downtube and seatstay protection, the ribbed chainstay protector features expanded coverage of the rear dropout pivot area.

Threaded BB
A standard 73mm threaded bottom bracket shell makes crankset maintenance hassle-free and prevents unwanted press-fit BB related noises.

Press In Headset
Our ZS44/ZS56 press in headset gives you the freedom to use angle adjust headsets if you feel the need to make your bike a touch slacker or a touch steeper.

Gear Accessory Mount
Our underside top-tube accessory mount allows you to carry a spare tube or other goodies safely on your frame in case you are looking to ditch the backpack.

Water Bottle Compatibility
We keep your water bottle clean inside the front triangle so you can keep hydrated without worrying about mud making it to your mouth.

Pivot Technology
Collet main pivot technology improves rear end stiffness and keeps your pivot hardware tight. Additional bearing shields prevent main pivot bearing contamination when washing your bike or riding in wet conditions.

Badass Bearings
We exclusively use EnduroMAX suspension pivot specific bearings in standard sizes that are readily available worldwide. Dual bearings are used at the dropout pivots for frame stiffness and additional c-clips lock the rocker bearings in place under torsional loads.

 

 

Welcome Guerrilla Gravity to the UK!

We are really pleased to welcome Guerrilla Gravity to our collection of bike brands! This is a big one, and we couldn’t be more excited to get them in the shop and under riders bums. But why? What’s special? Well, loads to be honest. From the manufacturing, frame materials, linkage design, geometry changes and sizing…

Don’t care about our rambling? Want to know what we have coming in? First two bikes being delivered is one The Smash long travel 29er and one Megatrail long travel 27.5″, these are both our demo bikes and should be ready to ride before the xmas break (that is quite soon, even if you don’t want it to be!) Limited stock will follow in the new year, and we have three sizes of both Smash and Megatrail frames coming in, with a choice of black or orange decals and either Fox DPX2 Performance Elite or MRP Hazzard Coil shocks. These are online already and can be found here:

Guerrilla Gravity UK Stock 

Guerrilla Gravity Frame Deposit £250

Guerrilla Gravity The Smash & MRP Hazzard Coil Orange £2850

Guerrilla Gravity Megatrail & DPX2 Black Me Out £2750

So who are they and what’s the big deal?

  • True Made-in-USA frame with carbon front end
  • Adjustable reach
  • Adjustable rear travel or suspension feel
  • Modular frame platform
  • Progressive geometry
  • Plays very well with coil
  • Coil options out of the gate
  • Fantastic value
  • Frame inc DPX2 P/E – £2750
  • Frame inc MRP Hazzard Coil – £2850
  • Water bottle
  • Integrated loop storage

One of the best overviews we have found was done by bicycling.com, linked below. They say:

The revolution is being staged from a non-descript brick building on a gritty industrial block in Denver. The insurgents share a parking lot with a CrossFit gym. But you can tell which trucks are theirs by the tailgate pads. From beyond the lot’s chainlink fence, you can see the Mile High Stadium; across the street, a noise barrier for I-25.

This is the modest home of a 13-person company that says it has beat Trek, Specialized, and Giant to a new technology—and figured out how to do something those companies have not: manufacture a carbon mountain bike frame in the USA, and sell it for less than bikes made overseas.

The company calls itself Guerrilla Gravity, and its claims are bold: Their new carbon fiber material and manufacturing process, collectively called Revved, enables them to automate much of the layup process—a step typically done by hand—which decreases labor by 80 percent. They can bake a frame in 30 minutes, compared to the two to four hours they say it takes competitors. Their carbon is 300 percent tougher than the industry standard. And they’ve cut what they say is a 24 to 48-hour process down to 8.

The bikes employ a revolutionary “modular frame platform” design inspired by racecar engineering. A racing team, instead of building multiple cars for multiple tracks and conditions, engineers one vehicle with interchangeable components that can be optimized for each track. All four of Guerrilla’s new carbon mountain bikes—from the short-travel trail to the all-mountain model—use the same front triangle. Riders can convert their frame to any of the other models with a new shock and one of Guerilla’s “seatstay tuning kits,” sold separately.

President and co-founder Will Montague, 33, believes their new carbon technology proves that it can be cheaper and more efficient to build a mountain bike frame in the U.S. from U.S.-made materials, compared to the industry-wide model of outsourcing to Asia. Despite the shop’s small size, Montague’s has been dreaming big for years. In a 2015 interview with The Denver Post, Montague was less circumspect about his intentions: “We want to go toe-to-toe with those big guys.”

Get the full low down here – bicycling.com Guerrilla Gravity Overview

 

So how do you get a frame or bike in the UK then? If you can make it to the Tweed Valley and want to book a demo, get in touch! We have a Smash and Megatrail arriving in time for xmas break testing. Both Size 3, so 465-475ish Reach.

We have our first delivery of frames arriving in Jan 2020, these are a mix of Megatrail and Smash frames in sizes 2, 3 and 4. Kept it simple and just went with a mix of black stealth and orange decals, with both Fox DPX2 Performance Elite and MRP Hazzard Coils.

These are available as just a frame and shock for home builds, or a frame/fork combo, rolling chassis or full bike. The packages will be online as we get closer to the arrival date, but one key combo for us is the ‘Colorado Coiler’ – so GG are from Colorado, MRP are from Colorado. These bikes ride great with coils, MRP make great coils. So there will be packages available with the MRP Hazzard and Ribbon Coil – so you can get that plush ride straight out of the box.

If you fancy something we don’t bring in that’s no problem at all, we can special order anything you fancy. These do carry pretty long lead times so it’s not for the impatient folk, but if you are willing to wait we can get it in. Just get in touch for a chat if you don’t see what you want. We might be able to create it from current stock, or can get it ordered for you.

Even within what we have here there is plenty of scope to mix it up with the modular frame platform. Most obvious being the MegaSmash (secret menu… shhh!).

This is essentially the Megatrail frame but with the lower stack headset cup fitted, then using a long travel 29er fork and wheel up front giving the latest in mullet glory.

 

 

 

2019 Brother Cycles Summer Sale – Big Savings on Big Bro and Kepler Disc!

You wouldn’t think it’s summer with the constant rain and thunder storms, but apparently it is and that means only one thing, it’s Brother Cycles Summer Sale time!

Kepler Frameset now £420 – 2019 Brother Cycles Kepler Disc Frameset

Big Bro Frameset now £499 – 2019 Brother Cycles Big Bro Frameset

Big Bro Complete now £1479 – 2019 Brother Cycles Big Bro Complete

Kepler Complete now £1340 – 2019 Brother Cycles Kepler Disc

We have 20% off Big Bro and Kepler Disc framesets and complete bikes, finance and CTW still available on complete bikes contact us for more information.

Shipping through the UK free of charge and framesets to the EU, these are both real staff picks here at planet Pedals lots of love for the Big Bro and Kepler.

 

 

 

 

Welcome to 2019, the Year Of Adventure!

We are just getting back into the swing of things after the festive break an it’s looking like Jan is going to be all about drop bar adventure machines! Finally got a couple of Brother Cycles offer bikes built up – a lovely Kepler Disc 650b and a BigBro Hydro Dropbar. BUT ALSO….

The 2019 Rondo Ruut bikes are finally arriving – we have kept these a bit quieter this year as we couldn’t get solid delivery dates but they are now in the UK and filtering through to us over the next week or so.

 

The new steel ST is the first to be sent out to us but the AL is expected to follow in a few days!

 

 

2019 Rondo HVRT UK In Stock!

It has been a little time coming but the new Rondo HVRT bikes have started to arrive, and they look stunning. Pronounced ‘Hurt’ (just like the ‘V’ in our home town Edinbvrgh!)

The result of blending fast and focused road geometry with clearance for large tyres, you no longer have to choose between speed and comfort. We have been asked a few times what exactly they are for, and to be honest that’s up to you! Especially on the carbon versions you can mix with the fastest bunch on a Sunday run, smash crit races, or just pack the miles in. However they are equally at home on rough back roads or ‘true gravel’ – like they do in the States – or mudguarded up for the commuting grind.

First ones to arrive in the UK are the aluminium (£1599) and steel (£1999) with the carbons to follow shortly. Click through for full details. – Please note we are currently updating our site and have a couple of legacy HTTP images to get rid of – you may get a security warning. If this happens to you please get in touch if you want to know more about the bikes.

2019 Rondo HVRT ST

2019 Rondo HVRT AL

2018 Rondo Ruut UK In Stock SOON

We are now only a few days away from the new Rondo Ruut gravel/adventure bikes arriving in the UK, our website has been updated with full spec listings and the cycling media has been out testing them.

Rondo Ruut AL / Rondo Ruut ST / Rondo Ruut CF2 / Rondo Ruut CF1

Click through to our web items for new detailed product images and full specs. Bikes are arriving with us over the next week or two, and hopefully we will usually have at least one example of each frame material to view in the shop and road test, with a medium CF2 available to be booked for off road testing.

Bikes can be reserved over the phone or with our deposit item – Rondo Bike Deposit – using paypal checkout for £200

Feast your eyes on some media highlights:

CX Magazine

Rondo.cc (click link for full catalog)

BikeRadar Ruut CF2 First Ride

Grit CX First Ride

2018 Orbea Rallon UK Launch and Demo

This time last week all we knew was ’29er Rallon’, and look how far we have come! Released yesterday to all-round approval from the media and online commentators, having ridden and played with it ourselves we are VERY keen for these to come in. We are living a life post-enduraline. So what do you need to know?

Three offical models in the UK, £3899 £5699 and £6899 plus our own ‘M-Pedals’ spec at £4499 for air or £4799 for coil.

See our web items for Orbea Rallon M10, M-Team, M-LTD or use our £200 deposit item to reserve any bike while we chat through options. Get in touch for more information.

M-Pedals Custom Build:

Lifetime warranty, MyO custom colour program available at no extra cost. 29″ wheels, 160mm front 150mm rear travel. Efficient pedalling, fun downhill and oh so capable. Check our some full reviews here:

Pinkbike Rallon Review 

Vital MTB Rallon 

Bike Mag Rallon 

We have our first bikes on order and will have one of the first demo bikes in the UK as well, with the first delivery expected in early September.

Pre-orders are now being taken and the first custom MyO are expected to be ready at the same time, so no delay for custom colour options!

Race Testing the Orbea Occam TR

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Orbea Occam TR M30

After a brief but happy spell with my Yeti ASRc I decided it was time to sell that bike and replace it with something similar but hopefully even better. After discussions with the Pedals guys and also the Orbea rep I decided to order an Orbea Occam TR. As a poor student turned poor graduate I tend to only have one mountain bike at a time and in my search for the ultimate all-rounder a 120mm travel 29er on paper fits the bill best for my type of riding and racing. Nowadays this includes everything from riding big hills and the golfy, to doing laps of trail centres and all the way through to XC events and ultra-distance marathon and bikepacking events. (See my Highland Trail Race Blog for details of my first crack at the ultra-scene : http://pedalsbikecare.co.uk/highland-trail-race-2016/ )

It is more or less a stock M30 build as you can buy from Pedals although I’ve changed to my preferred contact points: ESI chunky foam grips and a Bontrager saddle with titanium rails (and now a Fizik Aliante Saddle). I also had the guys in the shop fit a Rockshox Reverb seatpost, upgrade the brakes from Deore to SLX and put on an Absolute Black 30t oval chainring rather than using the stock double setup. Because I got the bike very early we had to do these changes in the shop whereas normally Orbea offer the opportunity for customers to configure the spec from a range of options so that they can make these sorts of changes when they order the bike. A very useful idea to save you from having a bunch of unwanted new parts lying around after you have swapped on your preferred bits. Other than that I have been using it in its stock setup.

Usefully, I had three events coming up when I got the bike that would give me an opportunity to really put it through its paces: the Scottish Cross Country Mountain Bike Championships, The Tour de Ben Nevis event (a marathon event with special timed enduro stages that count to the overall) and The Capital Trail (a 150 mile self-supported bike packing event).

Scottish Cross Country Mountain Bike Championship (SXC)

Result: 5th Elite/Expert Male

XC Setup

XC Setup

My background is in XC having raced a lot as an under 16 and under 18, more recently I tend to cherry pick the odd SXC to do each year. This brought me to the start line of the Scottish Cross Country Championships which were being held at Forfar. It was a fun course that had a long smooth climb to start followed by a number of descending and traversing rough sections before finally having a long descent towards the end of the lap. The XC lap utilised a number of descents that had been used in the previous days Enduro event.

When the race started I quickly settled into my rhythm (of sorts) up the first climb. Riders on super light cross country hardtails sprinted off ahead as I focussed on keeping the contents of my stomach in place up the first long smooth climb. On the rough sections I found the bike exceptionally efficient to ride with the suspension fully open and I was able to pedal efficiently whilst seated which allowed me to gain on riders in front. On the prolonged descent I put the saddle down and carried excellent speed and caught riders on every lap, I also received a cheer for “hucking” a grass stepdown in the race HQ field each lap as riders ahead presumably kept the wheels on the ground. The race was held over 5 laps and over the last two laps my speed on the rougher sections of the course were apparent as I caught and went past a rider each lap to move into the top 5.

5th place at the Scottish Championships marked my best ever result in a senior field at a cross country event and I was delighted with how well the bike performed despite not being the sort of bike typically ridden at these events by competitors.

Making use of the dropper post on course! Photo from Courier News – Angus Story.

Possible bike improvements:

Although the bike is extremely competitively weighted at 27.5 lbs as it is, against competitors on 20 -22lbs cross country hardtails I did lose time on the climbs. If I was racing more cross country events I would definitely consider getting a set of race wheels and specific XC race tyres which would likely drop the bikes weight by up to 2 lbs. Also for general riding, lighter does tend to be better, assuming the lighter components are still up to the abuse so when funds allow I may upgrade the wheels.

The bike however was outstanding on the overall majority of the course and saying that it didn’t suit sprinting up fire roads is hardly a criticism at all! It was efficient to pedal, playful on the descents and supremely comfortable. Not as light as a pure xc bike, but I doubt the other competitors could ride their bike down Water World at the Golfy!

No Fuss Events: Tour de Ben Nevis

Result: 1st Senior Men

Marathon Enduro Bike Setup : big mudguard, saddle bag (very enduro) and small rucksack

Marathon Enduro Bike Setup : big mudguard, saddle bag (very enduro) and small rucksack

This event is a bit of a right-of-passage for the all-round mountain biker in Scotland. Described on the No-Fuss events page as:

“The thinking mans (or womans) mountain bike race where all round fitness, strenghth, power, skill, determination are all  bound together with a little bit of strategy and tactics.”

Because of horrifically wet conditions, the route for this year had been swapped to an out and back to avoid a rather high river crossing but included a number of testing stages which were: 1) the overall loop, 2) a descent into Kinlochleven, 3)a climb out of Kinlochleven. The winner would be decided based on an accumulation of position on the 3 stages.

I started the race well and settled into a rhythm along the first tarmac climb before joining the West Highland Way. The last time I had been on the WHW had been in the Highland Trail Race and I enjoyed the difference in speed now that I was riding it fresh and without a loaded bike. I steadily picked off places and made up even more on the descending stage. On the climbing stage I went slightly too easy being unsure where the top was but managed to ride the following rough prolonged traverse very quickly to make up for it and drop some riders who were behind. I wasn’t certain of my position for the overall loop at this stage and thanks to being near the turn was able to count riders coming the other way. 1……2……3…….. I made the discovery I was sitting in 4th place at exactly half distance. On the return leg I was overtaken by one other rider when I stopped to refill my water bottle and laid chase but never quite managed to catch him. Thus I finished the overall loop in 5th place.

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How wet? These were my gritty insoles 2 days after the ride.

I reckoned I had ridden consistently over all three stages and was delighted to find out I had taken 2nd overall and 1st place Senior Male after a consistent performance in all stages.

Possible bike improvements:

Errr… Going to have to say none for this one! For an all-round event this was literally the perfect bike. Blown away but how well it carried speed on the rough and wet WHW and it took the climbing and descending stages in its stride. I did not envy competitors on hardtails or with wimpy xc tyre setups!

Capital Trail

Result: 1st place overall

This was going to be the big un’, my second really quite long distance event of the year. It is the sort of event that when you tell the majority of folk about it their eyes glaze over and they politely nod before quickly forgetting everything you have said. It is definitely a little silly, but also a lot of fun and a good way to really test yourself. It is organised by the enigmatic Markus Stitz who recently finished riding around the world single-speed. Here is the website for those interested: http://markusstitz.com/capital-trail/

I lined up with about 50 of the other crazies who had signed up. The start was on the beach in Portobello at 7am. The call to start was followed by a surprisingly fast opening section and before I knew it I desperately trying to remove my primaloft pullover jacket riding no hands as I was rapidly overheating. I quickly settled into a rhythm alongside Huw Oliver, a fellow finisher of the Highland Trail Race and we steadily worked our way through the field. The early miles ticked by and we were briefly joined by David King and then Martin Graeme who both sped off ahead at different points. We worked out we were in 3rd and 4th place but with well over 100 miles to go we put it out of our heads and focussed on riding at our own very evenly matched temp. Huw was my companion for almost 2/3rds of the ride and I immensely enjoyed his chat and world views whilst also occasionally worrying I couldn’t match him on the climbs or the descents of the route as he was riding immensely strongly!

img_20161003_173211

Ready to race as the sun is coming up

The miles ticked by uneventfully with a neutralised toilet stop in one town and a shop raid in another and it didn’t seem long before we were past the halfway point and I was feeling surprisingly strong still. On the climb and hike a bike up to Gypsy Glen disaster struck however and I suddenly only had 3 working gears. A quick inspection showed my shifter was acting up and no amount of looking was revealing any obvious problems and it seemed internal gremlins had been doing some damage.I decided to ride on 3 speed reckoning it was better than having only one gear and planned to try to get a shifter in Peebles or at Glentress. Huw and I were joined by David Jones at this point although the three of us separated on the final parts of the climb. I had gotten used to my 3 speed setup by the time I had climbed descended and traversed my way to Peebles so reckoned riding with three gears would be quicker than stopping and getting a new shifter so I bypassed the Peebles bike shop. After a quick lap of Glentress (quick considering the 100 ish miles of off road in the legs) I was heading along the cyclepath back to Peebles when I went to change gear only to find I was missing half my shifter. At this point it would be understandable to have spat the dummy but for whatever reason I managed to shrug it off and remained positive. Down to one gear and now with no chance to replace it as the shops were now shut I remained surprisingly confident I could still finish the ride. In my head I had 30 miles to go which would take me to the top of the Pentlands, and the end of the significant climbing of the ride, before a 20 mile run in back to Portobello.

capital-trail-by-huw

Photo taken by Huw up the Three Brethren

I chatted with David who had just caught me but he went elsewhere for food in Peebles to me and I assumed I would meet him and Huw on the next section. After a shop stop I was on my way riding single-speed having set the bike up in the middle gear (having made the assumption single-speeders just ride in a middle gear!?). By this point it was dark so I was enjoying the night riding and had some music going so my positive mood remained despite having to walk up the steep hills. Full suspension bikes are not very efficient as single-speeds!  I was on familiar bridleways and fire-roads and could see tyre marks in the grass so assumed Huw and David were ahead having overtaken me whilst I was in the shop and I tried my best to catch them up. However, West Linton arrived and I still had not caught them so I ascended the Pentlands alone. Finally I caught site of some lights up ahead but was greeted by a random cyclist out for a spin in the Pentlands rather than familiar face. I gave up on the idea of catching them at this point assuming I had been going slower than I had thought in my one gear.

At the top of the last hill in the Pentlands I let a little bit of cable through at the derailleur to put myself into a bigger gear and made quick work of the following sections that took me down to Cramond. The route went amusingly close to my house but I had the coastal side of Edinburgh to pedal around before the end of the ride. I arrived in Portobello at the finish to a deserted front in the dark. I took a photo of my Garmin and saved the ride file and after pedalling around looking for Huw and David decided they must have headed to a Pub or Chippy and I wouldn’t find them. I phoned my brother for a quick chat and decided to head back to my mates house in Leith where I had arranged to stay. However, part way back to Leith I finally met my familiar faces. Huw and David had been behind the entire time! We had a quick laugh (a shell shocked-exhausted  laugh) before going our separate ways and I eventually made it to the flat after dodging a few wobblies who were walking away from the pubs at the bottom of Leith Walk.

The following day I travelled back to the finish to sit in the café and chat to other riders. Reunited with my ride companion Huw we emptied the café of food, tea and coffee and I learnt that Martin Graeme, who I thought was ahead had scratched (pulled out) around halfway which put me up into 2nd place. I then learnt the following day that David King had also scratched at halfway and as such I had actually been first back. Event organiser Markus confirmed later in the week that I was the first place finisher for the 2016 event with a time of 17 hours 25 minutes.

The fantastic event video by Markus:

Possible Bike Improvements:

A non-faulty shifter would have been nice but I managed fine with one gear although my knees hurt for several days after the event! Again it is very hard to pick anything major. For bike packing events a lot of folk ride plus bikes or rigid steel bikes but I love having a modern mountain bike. Carbon with 1×11 and a dropper seat post is the way most modern bikes are going and there is an obvious reason for this I think – it makes for a fast bike! Ultimately the fastest bike for this sort of riding is the bike you ride the most anyway. At the end of the day it is just mountain biking but for a much longer time. The Occam TR was extremely comfortable to ride and I found it more comfortable for the long miles than the old Yeti which had a racier more aggressive riding position. It was also very efficient over the rough ground which I definitely benefitted from as the ride went on reducing general body fatigue. Similar to cross country racing, having a lighter set of wheels would help the bike for the climbing sections but my bike was loaded up with bike packing bags filled with food, emergency shelter and spares so the bike felt heavier than normal anyway. Ultra-light, although nice, is not really the priority.

Final thoughts:

Orbea have really knocked this one out of the park in my opinion. For my needs it is hard to think of a bike better suited for all round mountain bike riding and racing. If you want an efficient and fun all round trail bike or fancy a bit of racing but don’t want to pidgeon-hole your riding this is the one for you. It is available in a range of specs and also there is the Occam AM model with 650b wheels and 140 travel so it is really a case of picking your flavour and working within your budget to pick the spec with the Orbea specification customizer. I am already excited to plan for 2017 and what my bike and I will be doing!

Transition 2017 Launch – The Carbon Scout IS HERE!

It’s the end of July so obviously, 2017 is here! We are living in the future! Well, bikes are anyway. Launch day for Transitions new range has arrived, and it’s a cracker.  First off, some images. Pictures pictures pictures.. then scroll past the slider for all the information. Demo bikes and stock are arriving before the end of August.

CARBON SCOUT

Most importantly is the new Carbon Scout, same award winning geo, but lighter! And with TITS! (that’s the Tubes Inside Tubes System). Check it out here – 2017 Transition Scout Carbon Full Build – Transition Bikes – Carbon Scout

We are going to be running this as a demo bike, most likely a large, so this will be available to take out and demo anywhere around central Scotland around the end of August. Want to reserve a demo slot? Call us on 0131 629 6065 or email shop@pedalsbikecare.co.uk

Reserve a frame or demo bike? All we need is £100 for frames and £200 for bikes – 2017 Transition Frame Deposit – 2017 Transition Bike Deposit

Frame is £2799, available on our rolling chassis package (for example add a set of Fox Factory 34s for £710, DT350/ARC27 wheels for £399 and the frame drops to £2519).

Transitions own full builds are £4998 to £8000 (youch, but it does have carbon wheels!) and we are going to be offering our own ‘Stock Custom’ builds – Fox suspension + seatpost, XT/SLX 11spd, ARC27 wheels etc, stay tuned for pricing.

CARBON PATROL + ALU PATROL 

 

The Patrol is the second ‘most updated’ for 2017, gaining not just new colours but also updated suspension kinematics with the new roller bearing driven Rockshox Super Delux rear shock connected to a refined rocker link. You can see them testing this setup on the Pinkbike Super Delux shock launch.

Same as this year we will be running a Patrol demo bike, but dropping from a carbon to an alu, but this time IN LARGE! You asked for it and we listened, plus we sell large and XL Patrols about 2:1 more than mediums… Again, arriving end of August so get in touch and arrange a demo.

The aluminium frame is now £1799, and the carbon £2999. HOWEVER – There are some 2016 carbon frames left in stock, so if you aren’t fussed about the new rear shock get in touch as they are available for £2299.

2017 Transition Patrol Carbon Full Build  –  2017 Transition Patrol Alu Full Build

Transitions full builds on the alu are £2799 to £7098, and again we will have our own Fox/Shimano/Raceface builds available as well. Or go full custom, tell us what you want!

Sick of my chat?  – 2017 Transition Frame Deposit – 2017 Transition Bike Deposit

SCOUT ALU + SMUGGLER  

These two remain unchanged for 2017, just some BNG, but they are great bold new graphics! We think they look ace. Frame prices are now £2599, but again we have a handful of Scout and Smuggler frames available from 2016, so if you don’t like the new colours or just want to pick up a deal get in touch.

You are really still reading our rubbish? – 2017 Transition Frame Deposit – 2017 Transition Bike Deposit

2016 Transition Smuggler Medium Black Last in stock!

2016 Transition Scout Frame + 2017 Fox 34 Offer

 

 

Highland Trail Race 2016

‘The Highland Trail is a long distance self-supported mountain bike time-trail route through the Scottish Highlands. There is no entry fee, no prize money, and definitely no support.’

Race Distance: 536 miles

http://www.highlandtrail.net/

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Before the start with my Yeti ASRc fully kitted out.

Day 1

As we awaited the start of the 2016 Highland Trail Race Alan Goldsmith (event organiser) beckoned me to the front of the group, “Come on, you’re one of the fast ones” he informed me and told me to get to the front. I laughed and obliged, but was highly doubtful that would prove to be the case. Certainly I may be quite experienced in shorter XC events or Enduro events, but over 550 miles? No way. The Highland Trail Race would be my first bike packing event and my first attempt at any multi day ultra-endurance event and I saw it is a chance to really truly test myself and possibly to find my limit.

Months of planning, blog reading and packing had got me here, time to start pedalling. I resisted the urge to join any of the front runners and eased off the line as a few chose to burn some early matches and start with more of a sprint. Up the first technical climb on the WHW I found myself track standing behind other riders who failed to make the climb before riding up behind them and then passing them on the following brief descent. The first section was punctuated by a number of water crossings all of which were noticeably lower than when I had ridden the section the weekend before on a reconnaissance ride and because of this I was hopeful for dry trail conditions! I eased through the first part of the morning, eating and drinking often and picked off riders as best I could, careful to keep my effort in check. On the first tarmac section I chatted briefly with Ian Barrington, whose blogs of the HTR had been highly informative to me prior to my ride but then edged away on the next climb.

For a while I had been able to see Lee Craigie up ahead and was keen to catch her and catch up, having not seen her to talk to before the event. Lee and I are both former XC racers (Lee a significantly more successful one than me), and had both been part of the Scottish XC Programme, her as an elite and me as an under 16. It was fantastic to catch up with her, and along with Lars Henning we passed an enjoyable period chatting about everything from the state of Scottish XC racing just now (very good!) to what to expect from the trail.

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Ben Alder Cottage Bothy taken on a reconnaissance ride

It was around this point that I noticed I was feeling a little dehydrated, the discussion having distracted me from staying on top of drinking and now the sun was beating down. We stopped to fill up at a river and I felt slightly, but not entirely, better. Along the next section Lars dropped off and Lee and I were joined by Alan G; Alan admired my socks as I admired his route. He informed me he would “DQ anyone not wearing wool socks”, so I was understandably thankful for the contribution of the merino sheep to my ride! We passed the Ben Alder Cottage bothy and I marvelled at how on my reconnaissance ride this was where I stopped for the night, about 50 miles in, a good ride by normal standards, but barely half a day in the HTR. Up the next climb I really started feeling the heat, and stopped to dunk my head in any water source that I could find. The descent from the Bealach Dubh was a familiar one to me, and as such I rode it with confidence, enjoying the water bar hops and perfect conditions, I passed both Alan and Lee in the process. However on the next section I started feeling really quite unwell with the early signs of heatstroke and the two of them quickly passed and dropped me. I decided that I would take a longer break at Laggan. With my head thumping and stomach churning I arrived at Wolftrax and attempted to drink a coke and eat a piece of cake. Lee, who was just leaving as I arrived, advised me to take it easy for a bit as did Lars who arrived just after me. I must have looked quite unwell! I sat in the shade with my eyes closed for 20 minutes and started to feel better with my headache lifting.

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Descent from the Bealach Dubh taken on a reconnaissance ride

I rolled out of Laggan with jelly legs and forced myself to sip water; each mouthful required me to suppress a wretch and was accompanied by a fresh wave of nausea as each mouthful hit my stomach. SHIT I thought to myself, having flashbacks to a similar ride last year I had been on with James from Pedals Bike Care when dehydration and overheating had left me in quite an unpleasant state. Mercifully, after consuming 1 litre of water in this uncomfortable fashion, I started to feel better and ascended the Corrieyairack pass and rolled down into Fort Augustus. Again not entirely without issue as a guy in a range rover angrily shouted at me for accidentally going through the wrong gate and onto ‘private property’. He videoed me on his phone saying he was going to phone the police, whilst I apologised and said I was trying to leave the property now. I wondered if he would understand if I told him I had been blinded by pizza goggles and was somewhat delirious from the heat but decided a repetition of “I’m sorry sir” would suffice.

Arriving in Fort Augustus I rolled into the famous pizza restaurant and sat with Alan and Lars, Alan wearing a similar expression to the one I imagine I had been wearing at Laggan. I ate half my pizza as he pushed his around his plate, then I rolled out of Fort Augustus with the other half in my frame bag. My best case scenario going into this event was to make it to the bothy at approx. 115 miles on the first day. However, I ended up getting there in daylight so I carried on catching Andy Laycock and we discussed the problems of the first day, he said he had been suffering with cramp. As I chatted with Andy I suddenly realised how positive I was feeling and it was with joy that I finally switched on my lights as the sun went down. Even after all these years of riding I still get a special buzz from riding at night, following a beam of light allowed for a more focussed mood and I zipped along enjoying the night time bonus miles. I had moved past the heatstroke and could not really believe the mileage I had managed to put in at this point. The next hour or two were punctuated by spotting other riders bivvied off the road and I eventually decided to stop at 130 miles, just before midnight.

Unfortunately, if the heatstroke represented my first mistake in the race, this was the second. I slept quite poorly, jumping at little noises and struggling to actually fall asleep as I was feeling so excited and wired. I later learnt the race leaders continued to another bothy further down the trail which on reflection I could have easily made that night as I was not feeling especially tired when I bedded down. This may have offered me a better sleep but I did not know of its existence. In my defence I had never considered I would cover so much ground on day one so had not researched any other bothy options on this section of trail.

Day 2

Eventually at 4am I decided to get up and get going again as there did not seem any chance of getting more sleep. After a bit of faffing to pack I ate a slice of pizza on the move but I struggled to get into my groove. It seemed like there was an awful lot of riding ahead of me that day! Indeed on each of the following mornings I had a spell where the idea that I had started riding already and likely would continue to ride until midnight seemed obscene and caused me initially to feel a little apprehension but also often to feel giddy with excitement. Eventually I rolled into Contin and suddenly I was passed a huge moral gift package as I spotted Lee. She was sitting on a bench outside the Contin store which had opened early for riders. A  brief chat with Lee, a coffee and a tasty sandwich and suddenly I was back feeling positive and was more optimistic for the day’s riding.

The section from Contin to Oykell Bridge was defined by two pairs, the first of which was a pair of geese that tried to attack me, forcing me to double back then sprint full gas past to avoid their snapping beaks. Obviously the guard geese had not been told I was a vegetarian and as such should possibly be given a little slack compared to the other competitors. The second pair was a pair of riders I would later learn were Stuart and Phil, the overnight leaders, who had enjoyed a lie in. They passed me riding side by side and at the time I did not recognise them, but as they went by I assumed my pace must be slowing and I was therefore probably slipping down the field. At this point I roughly thought I was around the top 10 but was not really sure.

Upon arriving at Oykell Bridge I was pleased to see a few bikes outside including Lee’s and I sat at a table with her and enquired about how we were getting on in the race and who was ahead. I was totally shocked to find out that just shy of 200 miles I was actually sitting in a room with the front group. “Shit, I am not supposed to be here” I laughed, with texts from my girlfriend, dad and James at Pedals all questioning whether I had started too fast. I vowed to try to ride the afternoon more steadily. As Lee and the leaders left I took things more slowly. It would be the last I would see of the front of the race.

In Oykell Bridge I struggled to eat the meal set out before me and left feeling a little sick once again (likely the after effects of my heatstroke and a lack of any real quality sleep). Whilst riding in heavy rain I felt my moral dipping slightly. Over the next section a number of riders came by including Andy, Fraser Macbeath and also an unidentified rider who once again passed me like I was standing still. I would later find out this had been Liam Glen, the eventual winner who had started 2 hours after the main group on day one after an issue with his car. As I passed through Glen Golly my nausea meant I was struggling to eat and I felt like my progress was slow as I did not feel like I had very much energy.

Resupplies are important!!!

Oykel Bridge was the last possible resupply for a while.

This marked my first real low point of the race. Although I had felt unwell the day before and sluggish in the morning I had not really struggled to keep going. However now, the remoteness and exposure was starting to get to me and I began to question, for the only time during the event, whether I was really up to the task. I started to doubt myself quite deeply and I began to feel slightly afraid.

Perhaps I should explain. The fear I was feeling was more than a fear of remoteness and of a weakness in my resolve. A number of issues had caused a negative spiral for me that was compounded by my dislike of riding exposed sections of descent and through this section there was exposure in abundance. This is because last year, whilst racing in the Enduro World Series in Les Samoans in France, I had suffered an extremely bad crash. During a race stage I had fallen and rolled around 30 feet into a ravine knocking myself out, I was eventually airlifted from the scene on a spine board, falling in and out of consciousness. Miraculously I had suffered no broken bones, the X-Ray and CT scans had confirmed my back was not broken and the CT scan on my head also revealed no bleeds or abnormalities. Despite this good news, the crash did leave me suffering with various concussion symptoms and it took me around 4 months from the date of the crash to fully return to normal. Throughout the period I had problems with my concentration, short term memory loss, suffering mood swings and also developing obsessive tendencies. It was a difficult period for me, my family and loved ones.

So perhaps it was justifiable that riding the northern loop of the HTR on my own in thick cloud was making me a little frightened. However I knew that if I kept going things would get better again. I spied Andy up ahead, but unfortunately could not catch him. After eating two slices of leftover pizza, I ascended the Bealach horn and was extremely surprised to see James Robertson, the event photographer. He snapped a few shots and I continued struggling with the descent down to Achfary as my wrists ached. Suddenly my phone pinged to life as I had phone signal for the first time in hours and messages from my dad, girlfriend and James, “it’s all downhill from here” being sent presumably as I had hit the northern most point, these all lifted my moral. I decided that I needed a better sleep tonight so bedded down on the climb out of Achfary just as it was getting dark. I drifted off more quickly, happy I had made it through my first real test on the route. Tomorrow would be better.

Happier times riding in the Alps last summer before my crash

Happier times riding in the Alps last summer before my crash

Day 3

I opened my eyes and could not entirely decide whether I was seeing what I thought I was. It appeared like a dark blanket was pulsing just on the other side of my midge net. As I blinked sleep from my eyes I began to see a little more clearly and realised that the blanket was in fact not a solid mass but instead the most midges I have ever seen in my life. Like a giant Alpkit branded caterpillar I wiggled my riding kit on careful to not let a millimetre of skin show outside of my bivvy sack and packed up as quick as I could before putting in my contact lenses and eating a sandwich when I found somewhere with a little breeze up the hill that was free of midges.

I climbed and descended a number of brutal bumps in the famous road between Kylesku and Drumbeg and planned how best to ration my food to get to Lochinver when suddenly a man in a car at Drumbeg shouted to me and offered my second major moral gift package of the ride, “Are you one of those riders? We’ve opened the store early for you” he informed me.  I could have hugged him. I rolled along to Drumbeg stores and the owner prepared me a cup of coffee, and I ate a warm slice of pizza and two chocolate pastries. I also managed to stock up on baby wipes and some germoline to attend to my saddle sores. Suddenly the world seemed rosier. The next section passed uneventfully and I once again was hugely enjoying myself. I bought pies in Lochinver, chatted with a lovely couple on the hike a bike that followed and then with two more folk as I joined the road section before Oykell Bridge. I also vaguely remember telling a sheep that it had a very nice coat. Brown wool I believe, very stylish.

I arrived in Oykell Bridge and noticed a bike I did not recognise outside. I went in and introduced myself to a tired looking gentleman by the name of Ian Fitz who I quickly found out was the supplier of my paper maps via the Bear Bones Forum. Thanks again Ian! I learnt it was Ian’s birthday and we both discussed how we were surprised how far round the route we already were. Ian left slightly before me. After struggling with my first real test the day before, I was delighted to have other riders to occasionally converse with again and hugely benefitted from the chat with Ian. I was hopeful I would catch him up later. Phil Fraser Thomson arrived and I laughed when I realised he had been behind me having been convinced when he’d left Oykell Bridge the day before ahead of me that I was slipping rapidly down the field. It was an important lesson about how riders ebb and flow may vary and I marvelled at how one minute a rider may seem to have twice your strength and the next you may find yourself ahead of them. On the section to Ullapool my appetite finally returned after a day of occasional nausea and I ate my final Lochinver Pie and two snickers bars. When I arrived in Ullapool I phoned my dad and told him of my plans to reach the Shenavaill bothy that night. I later would find out he stayed up to midnight to watch me get to the bothy on track leaders! The dot watchers are a valuable asset to any riders moral as it’s such a benefit to know people are willing you on and rooting for you.

The amazing maps which thankfully I never needed to use

The amazing maps which thankfully I never needed to use

The next section featured two huge hike a bikes which were passed in the company of Ian Fitz and Phil FT, both of whom I caught during the section. It was an absolute pleasure to share the section with them and I chatted relentlessly like an excited child about everything that popped into my head. I was happy to pass this section in the company of other riders. I marvelled at Ian’s experience in remote riding and long distance events and at how positive he was about really cracking on and his master plan to stop sleeping at some point. Whilst chatting with Phil he disclosed this was his third attempt at the route. I again was left feeling astounded at his tenacity to keep returning to attempt the ride. It was quite humbling to see how much he wanted to finish it and it left a lasting impression on me about what sort of attitude it took to take on and finish a route of this nature. Phil would finish the ride ahead of me in the end and his successful completion offered me almost as much satisfaction as my own.

Whilst riding with these two I noticed how my interest in racing as I conventionally saw it was waning. I was motivated to finish the route as quickly as possible, but any interest in beating other riders or getting one up on them had all but disappeared. These two during this section were my companions through a period of adventure, and I saw that we were each racing the HTR route but not each other. We rode the last section in the dark together before reaching the bothy and all falling asleep rapidly in the company of an already asleep Fraser. It had been a considerably better day than the one before as I had hugely enjoyed the riding both on my own and in the company of others.

Day 4

I awoke to the noise of other riders packing up and rolled over but I couldn’t get back to sleep. I snapped myself out of it reminding myself I was in a race. My morning routine seemed to take longer than everyone else’s and after using the bothy facilities (shovel) I was on the move about an hour after I woke up. It is definitely something I’ll look to improve on in future events as I had far too much faffing to do when I woke up each morning; putting contact lenses into my eyes after 4 hours sleep being particularly difficult. I rolled away from the bothy and quickly entered what can only be described as “the zone”. Suddenly everything flowed smoothly as I pedalled and pushed my bike across this awe inspiring terrain. I occasionally glanced around to marvel at the beauty of my surroundings. THIS is what this race is about I thought, me and my bike against the route. I decided to utilise some music through this section and with some progressive metal blaring I floated up the hike a bike. One of the things I had learned to love about long rides on my own over the past year was the feeling of quiet mediation which made hours turn into minutes and miles disappear seemingly without effort. “A long slow meditation under duress” was how one ultra-athlete in an interview had described the process of racing one of these events, but this was more than that, this was pure elation, pinch yourself to check you’re not dreaming, type 1 fun.

I caught and passed Andy Laycock who had passed me during my morning’s faffing, he had bivvied just short of the bothy the night before.  Suddenly I was loch-side and beginning the much talked about postman’s path which only heightened my mood as I caught Ian Fitz again along the narrow ribbon of singletrack. Little did I know the rude awakening I was about to receive. Suddenly as we dismounted to descend into a gully we were met at the bottom with a hike-a-bike-double-black-diamond-difficulty obstacle course: a number of trees down across a stream. Ian appeared to effortlessly dispatch the section and quickly ascended out the other side. I heaved my bike onto my back and clambered through with all the grace of a tap dancing hippo. I dropped my bike off my back and just before taking my first step up the gully was hit with a crushing wave of tiredness. The inevitable heart rate spike of lifting my bike taking me out of the “the zone” and probably up into zone 5! Ian quickly disappeared as I seemed to be unable to shake my lethargy over the next section. Thankfully I somehow caught Phil FT just as he was back tracking after missing a turn and we rolled into Kinlochewe together as I tried to find some flow again.

The log obstacle course. Photo taken by Ian Fitz

The log obstacle course. Photo taken by Ian Fitz

After dispatching a bowl of quinoa and eggs (accidental but delicious order), a coffee and a huge scone I felt noticeably better. I also quizzed Phil on the social implications of rinsing grit out of my disgusting socks in the bathroom. Socially acceptable he ruled. My feet were noticeably more comfortable after too. Result. The temperature was very high again as I headed for the Torridon section. For some reason I suddenly felt extremely strong and wanted to crack on to ensure I got to Dornie with plenty time for dinner. I dispatched Torridon and the famous Achnashellach descent, riding a surprising amount considering my bike setup and motored along the road and the next section probably riding far too fast but I couldn’t stop myself. I passed Phil and Fraser in the process.

Sometimes I relax in Torridon and soak it in. There for my 21st Birthday in 2015

Sometimes I relax in Torridon and soak it in. Pictured there for my 21st Birthday in 2015

Before I knew it I was following tarmac again and entering Dornie. I headed straight for the shop. Closed. Shit. Suddenly I realised how little eat on the bike food I had with me and I knew I would have to ask for extra food to take away from the pub. I stepped into the Clachan and ended up generally making a fool of myself: ordering too much food, falling asleep, spilling things, spreading out all my smelly kit and generally causing a lot of concerned looks from the staff and other customers. “I’m in a race” I remember feebly apologising. I tagged Phil in just as I left and was hopeful that the establishment’s opinion of cyclists had not been lessened because of me. On the next section I had phone signal so called my dad and girlfriend confirming with them that I was on track to finish under 5 days. Suddenly it hit me, UNDER 5 DAYS! I was still on track for my best case scenario target, I just had to make it to the Camban Bothy tonight then I’d have one last day of riding to go. The next section and long hike a bike took longer than expected. Notable activities include trying to scribble the word ‘bothy’ onto a rock with an arrow beside as a message to Phil. It seemed worthwhile at the time… I arrived at the bothy around midnight, briefly chatted with Fraser (during the race I constantly was surprised who I would bump into as I thought Fraser was still behind at this point) but he fell asleep whilst I got some stuff from my bike. I ate a portion of sticky toffee pudding I had carried from the Clachan and went to sleep having set two alarms. 1 day to go!!!

Day 5

Where the hell am I? *Rubs eyes* Seriously. Where the hell am I? Oh right racing.

Fraser had gone, and I check my watch. 6.20am. Oh shit!!!!! I’d slept in. It was the final day of the race and somehow I had managed to sleep through Fraser’s alarm, Fraser leaving and my own two alarms to wake up extremely dazed and confused. After much faffing, shovel use and extreme sleepiness I rolled out of the bothy before 7.00am. Dot watchers later pointed out to me how silly the fly by is as everyone in the race apparently started quite a bit before me that morning. Doh.

The next section was testing again. I kept the sleepiness and dazed feeling and added the bonk as I was mostly out of food. Occasionally I would notice I was not moving and just sort of standing and staring. Come on Scott you’re racing?! Somehow I blew straight through a resupply opportunity at Tomich despite being out of food so I had to make it to Fort Augustus to eat. I was going super slowly and I knew it. I phoned my dad and told him I may not be able to finish today. He told me to speak to him after I’d eaten. After what seemed like forever I finally I begin the descent into Fort Augustus and spotted a figure that looks different to the usual tourists. Someone with a bike and a similarly haggard look – Andy! Again I resisted the urge to hug someone who may not want a hug. We chatted about the tough morning. Andy, for the second night in a row, bivvied less than an hour before the bothy then had passed me as I had slept. He left Fort Augustus a little before me. After a good feed courtesy of the store I started to finally feel awake. I had been craving yoghurt all morning and somehow bought a 90 calorie diet yoghurt. I had to laugh. My motivation was back as I knew I was on familiar ground from here until the finish. I text dad, “I can do this. See you tonight!!” I re-enter “the zone” and with the help of The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, fly along the Great Glen Way and catch Andy up.

On this section my niggly Achilles really started to hurt, but before I knew it we were in Fort William where I strapped it the best I could and enjoyed some more food. During this section I also noticed that my arms were extremely sunburnt and I had no sun cream so on went the arm warmers. Suddenly Bryan Singleton arrived and informed us that he had seen Alan Goldsmith earlier on too. It was strange meeting up with other racers who I had not seen in days! One look at Bryan confirmed to me I would not be able to keep up with him over the next section as he looked like he is out for a spin, but somehow I dropped Andy on the first section of the West Highland Way singletrack. I was in my own world and loving it when I heard a shout of “hello” from behind. Hike a bike master, race organiser extraordinaire and general chat merchant Alan Goldsmith had caught me up. I was delighted and was feeling reflective. I told him about how I have felt about racing this route and how I was happy with how it has gone but knew I could ride it faster. I dropped Alan on the descent into Kinlochleven and then dropped it myself on a water bar hop. In Kinlochleven I stuffed my face and responded to text messages. One last push!

Ascending the Devils Staircase was like a dream. I was initially in shadow but ascended into the light. It was perfect. I reached the top and before me was Glencoe and the final miles of the event. I finally acknowledged I was going to finish this. No matter what. I amused myself thinking of various catastrophes and how I would overcome them. For some reason I wondered if I was to break my collarbone or similar and walk to the end would I have to drag my bike with me too or would it just be me who would have to cross the line? Such morbid thoughts made me laugh at the time. As the sun set I stopped occasionally to add layers and eat macaroons.

At the top of the Devils Staircase on a reconnaissance ride

At the top of the Devils Staircase on a reconnaissance ride

Before I knew it I was on the tarmac to Bridge of Orchy and I tried my best to stop my head drooping. I felt very sleepy but any progress is good progress. I walked some of the uphill sections. On my GPS I see a little special line: the line that indicates where I’ve already ridden. I re-join the route I used to leave Tyndrum a life time ago. One last climb and descent then I would have done it. I slowly made the ascent and promise myself I won’t pedal again unless I have to. I have to a few times.

Then there was clapping. I see a group of people. Alan is there having finished a little before me. My dad hugged me and I shook hands with Alan. Suddenly my girlfriend Isla appeared and she hugs me too. As she stepped away I almost fell over. I really wanted to sleep. My twin brother Stuart is there too. Everything is a blur and I ate some food in the car then quickly fell asleep (apparently mid conversation with Stuart).

Epilogue

It has taken me a while to write about the Highland Trail Race and even reading over what I have written I cannot do the route, the experiences or what the race has meant to me justice. The ending of day 5 seems a little abrupt, but when the ending of this experience happened that was how it felt. In an instance I was transported from one world to another when I stepped off my bike for the final time. Others in their reflections have described it as ‘life-changing’. For me it was life-affirming. I have overcome adversity but also enjoyed and thrived on the trials of the event. Isla described it as being something I felt like I ‘needed’ to do. I think this is accurate as after the head injury last year and the difficult period that followed it I needed a new focus and a goal. Completing the HTR marks the end of my recovery. I went into the race interested to find my limit, and have found I still have no idea where my limit is, a very exciting prospect indeed. As a racer I know I can do better: I stopped too often, slept too much and aspects of my kit, pacing and preparation could be improved. I will return to the HTR and I plan to ride it faster in the future. Hopefully when I next sit with the leaders at a resupply I will be confident I belong there. At 22 years old I know I have a lot of head room in the ultra-endurance/bike packing racing scene and cannot wait for the events to come. But the 2016 HTR was more than a race for me; it was a truly liberating experience and I feel I understand myself much better because of it. In the modern world it is a rare opportunity indeed to have so singular and simple a focus for so long, it is a simple but wonderful existence when you are out there. It was a privilege to share the trail and experience with so many people. Thank you to everyone who supported me, there are too many people to mention but you know who you are.

Burst

Burst

Scott Lindsay

4 days 16 hours 5 minutes