Next Spokes Ride

The next Spokes Ride will be on Sunday 5th November 2017. Meet 10:00am at on Lothian Road outside the Usher Hall.

Destination East Lothian. Slightly hilly ride, further south this time. Pub Lunch.

Please check your bike before the ride, i.e. tyre pressure, chain and brakes. Bring some money for lunch, emergencies and possible café stops or post ride refreshments. Don't forget snacks to keep your energy levels up and a drink to consume en-route.
Don't forget to bring a small toolkit to fit your bike and a spare inner tube in case you get a puncture. It is much easier to replace the tube than to repair a tube, especially if you have a slow puncture.

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Weather

This weather forecast is generated by the Met Office Weather Widget

 

11 of us had a lovely ride to Gifford in East Lothian. The weather was dry, cool to begin with, but Falside Hill warmed us up. Check the photo gallery for pictures of the ride. We haven’t been to Gifford that often, most rides normally ending at Pencaitland. This time we got to Gifford at 12:40. Pictures on the website. Hope you enjoyed the ride. I made a mistake about the owners of Lennoxlove. They are the Duke and Duchess of Hamilton.

No breeze this month, and no pictures of me on the website, but I did do the Pirates of Lothian thing again.  The only problem was the temporary cycle path. A new track has been created which goes around the development. This is fine until you reached the Edinburgh border with East Lothian, then the path uses loose redstone.

This route is very complex, but basically we took a rough approximation out to the River Esk, south of Musselburgh, to Inveresk, then took an ‘As the Crow Flies’ across Falside Hill, North Elphinstone and Buxley before turning right on to the B6355. At the top of Fa'side Hill, I had plenty of time to take pictures while everyone got their breath back.

The B road to Gifford gives some wonderful views. Just after East Saltoun, the Bass Rock stood out white on the horizon, quite spectacular. The road is quite rolling after East Saltoun as well, but quiet. an excellent fast road to cycle on. We all arrived at Gifford before 12:50pm.

We stood outside the Tweeddale Arms Hotel, admiring the CTC logo on the front, then went to the park for a picnic lunch. I was eventually persuaded to go to the pub for spot of refreshment, otherwise I would have been quite lonesome on my own.

After lunch, we headed down to Haddington, then on to the Longniddry cycle path. Here a blue sign said Longniddry was 7 km, but the wooden sign said 7.35 km. This is an old railway path, it climbs, then descends around Stoney and Blakeny Knowe. We passed several members of the Fat Club on a Sunday walk enjoying the now warm July afternoon. By now, most of the clouds had been blown away, and the wind had also dropped.

This takes you past the Longniddry Bents, a sand dune system, and along to Seton Sands and Cockenzie. There is a holiday camp here with excellent views of the Power Station. Ash from the power station is dumped in Lagoons near Musselburgh. The Lagoons are a bird sanctuary.  The main track that passes the bird sanctuary was very rough, so some of us went on to the smooth path a bit higher up. A weird mixture of industrial and natural landscape.

In Musselburgh, the end of the ride as people split off the group from here to go home, we enjoyed ice-cream from Luca's Ice Cream shop.

Ride Stats

Distance:        82.5km (51.26 miles)
Average Speed:   17.9 km/h (11.12 mph)
Total climbing: 667m (2156 feet), not as much as expected!!!
Max Temperature: 21 deg C (70 deg F) starting from about 17 deg C at the Usher Hall with a cool NW breeze, which calmed down in the afternoon.
Time cycling:     4 hours 24 mins

Route Description

We left the Usher Hall and headed up Grindlay St., then along Spittal St, Lady Lawson St, Lauriston St and Lauriston Gdns to the Meadows. Here we followed the cycle path east to Buccleuch St, where we turned right, straight across the traffic lights at Melville Drive, turning left at the next set of lights on to W. Preston St., E. Preston St turning right on to Dalkeith Road. Left at the next set of lights on to Holyrood Park Rd. Just before Holyrood Park gates, we turned left in to East Parkside, then about 60m down, turning right 180 degrees to join the Innocent Railway Path.

We went through the tunnel which ends at Samson’s Ribs, the rock face of Arthur’s Seat. We followed the path across Braid Burn, Duddingston Rd West, and through Bingham before crossing the footbridge across Niddrie Burn, and across the Sport’s Field to turn right on to Duddingston Park South. Here we went up to the the crossroad junction, where we turned left on to Niddrie Mains Road. At The Fort, we took a right at the first roundabout, then a left on to Whitehill Road

At the end of Whitehill Road, we turned on to the cycle path, which accesses the Newcraighall / Musselburgh cycle path midway. At Musselburgh station, we followed the National Cycle Route Network through Stoneybank, down Ferguson Rd, along Cowpits Ford Road to the River Esk. We turned left to go along the newly tarmac’d surface for about 1.5 km, turning right up Windy Wynd to Inveresk Village Road. We turned right here, then left on to Crookston Road, which turns in to a cycle path giving access to Salter’s Road, the A6094, at its junction with the A1. We took a minor road just a little way past the A1 to go up Fa'side Hill.

At the top of Fa'side, we took a track across to Elphinstone Road, which we went straight across on to a minor road. At the end of this road, we turned right on to the Ormiston Road, B6371, then left a metres down, through Buxley. At Whiteloch Bridge, we turned right on to the B6355, which takes you all the way to Gifford.

We left just after 2pm, and headed down the B6369 to Haddington, passing Lennoxlove House along the way. Then we went though Haddington on the B6368, left in to the High Street, which is still very historic, if a little empty these days. Along Court Street, heading out of Haddington along Station road and West Road before turining right in to Alderston Road to access the Longniddry cycle path. At Longniddry, we did a 180 degree turn to go under the railway, then turn left on to the B1377, right on to Lyars Road, then left on to the coastal road, the B1348.

We took a rough path around the back of the Power Station, then followed a coastal route, and across the seashore at Prestonpans. West of Prestonpans, a rough track goes passes the Lagoons, where ash from the Power Station is dumped. This path continues to follow the coast to the mouth of the River Esk at Musselburgh. We then went down Goose Green Place, Goose Green Crescent, turning left in to James Street, right in to Millhill, then left in to Kerr's Wynd.

After this small break, we returned to Kerr’s Wynd, carried along Millhill, to cross the River Esk via the footbridge to North High Street, down Eskside West to the coast. We took the coastal path to the Harbour before turning right on to New Street, then right on to Edinburgh Road. Just inside the Edinburgh City boundary. a few said their goodbyes to proceed through Portobello to Trinity. The rest of us turned on to the Brunstane Burn path to Daiches Braes and Brunstane Road South, over the railway bridge, to connect with the cycle path and National Cycle Route 1. This took us back through Bingham, along the Innocent Railway path and tunnel to arrive back at East Parkside.

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