I slept for a few hours and decided on some personal care before I set off......I carefully attempted to prise them off - not an easy task with no running water, and in the confined space of a very full van. In the end to fully remove them, I had to pull!!!!! It brought tears to my eyes, and I can only imagine how red and sore the patch had become...
As I left John O’Groats at 8:30 am, I was looking forward to having a mighty tailwind but it was not to be. There was a fierce cross wind, and although slightly favourable, the gusts threatened to throw me off my bike on several occasions. I was convinced that the wind was trying to kill me, and despite the sunshine, it was freezing cold and brutal.
What followed for the next few hours was quite a surreal riding experience although it's one though that I'll never forget. In this remote and distant corner of the UK, I felt more like a real adventurer than at any other time in my life.
he next stop was Hamilton but it was still 35 miles away. The road quality was still poor, and I was beginning to feel very tender. Despite an empty road, I opted for a while to ride on the cycle path that ran along side the road, not because of safety, but for comfort. Much of the segregated path was new and nicely surfaced. The road was doing me too much damage. My pace had slowed to less than 12 mph…hardly a world record pace. I was still struggling to stay awake, but I started to revive a little once dawn began to appear and the rain subsided a little.
Despite the weather, it still felt like an adventure. I would rather have stayed in bed, but the type 2 challenge of riding through the storm held some appeal at the time. After all, today was the day that I would reach Scotland, and our planned overnight stop was to be right on the banks of Loch Lomond, and I have been looking forward to waking up there since I planned the route.