I don't mind wild camping, but a week long trip without a shower is a big no for me. 114 km. I rode this route over three days with Simon Richardson from the Global Cycling Network in April 2019, and you can watch the video from our trip below. A combination of the route, scenery and beautiful sunny weather for the entire trip made this a memorable ride. Locals love a good adventure so talk to them even during Covid! The North Coast 500 Only three years since its inception, the North Coast 500 has already become one of the worlds iconic road touring routes. North Coast 500 Cycle Route – Scottish bikepacking adventure. The beautiful north west of Scotland. The 5 day plan might change, likely be 6 days. Bikepacking: Off-Pavement Bicycling and camping where you would if you were to go backpacking. The GPX file is available from the official North Coast 500 site, along with a printable map however my Sat Nav (a Tom Tom Rider V) found it far too complex, there are thousands of way points on it, and the sat nav just just refused to load it. Here's Si's 3T Exploro in full bikepacking set up after tackling the challenge with Mark Beaumont! If you're doing 5/6 days maybe skip some of the east coast is it is boring. This is probably the most challenging and hilly section of the route, but once you reach Durness at the top, things do start to flatten out a bit as you head east. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts. This slightly alternative North Coast 500 was made in collaboration with the people behind the official driving route, to make an official NC500 Cycle Route. We wild camped overnight on the Scottish coastline and even met Jenny Graham for a coffee at Ardgay Stores! The traditional NC500 route to John O'Groats becomes a bit of a commute back to Inverness on the often busy A9, whereas this route that cuts inland is constantly changing and stunning. Awesome! How much have you spent doing it? Often touted as the Scottish equivalent to the USA's Route 66, it's a 500 mile loop, that takes you around the coastline of the Scottish highlands, taking in some of the country's best scenery and a good dose of demanding gradients. If you're happy doing 100m a day then go for it. How did you keep up with hygiene? If you are staying in hostels and carrying expensive electronics, you may want to consider investing in a PacSafe net US / UK. It is all pretty lumpy! Planning on doing this the first week of September, but probably over 5 days... any tips?! Although it does miss a visit to John O'Groats, this option is much prettier and quieter than the NC500 driving route. Inverness Castle is the official start and end of the North Coast 500. BIKEPACKING.com is dedicated to exploration by bicycle. 803 km. Leaving Inverness is fairy flat and through farmland for the first few hours until you reach the first lochs and sea lochs of the west coast. If you're dreaming of incredible coastal and mountain views, breathtaking roads and some pretty challenging climbs too, this is the challenge for you. The North Coast 500 has been a remarkable success in bringing motorists to Scotland by highlighting the terrific scenery and historical attractions around the north. The West Coast Heading South, we stopped off at Scourie to walk the dog on the beach. Main cost was the sleeper train to Inverness, More posts from the bikepacking community. The beautiful north west of Scotland. I imagine plenty of places still open for food and drink, and camping would he fine. To enjoy it more and stop off I would advise between five and seven days. The North Coast 500, often described as Scotland’s Route 66, take in some of Scotland’s most impressive wild places, from the mountains and lochs of Wester Ross and Assynt to the rugged sea cliffs of Sutherland. Tour Overview. A loop starting and ending at Inverness Castle, the North Coast 500 follows a route around the country’s breathtaking mountains and lochs, taking in the UK’s biggest elevation-gaining road climb along the way – … Bikepacking: Off-Pavement Bicycling and camping where you would if you were to … Get recommendations on the best single tracks, peaks, & plenty of other exciting outdoor places. More here. 48.0k members in the bikepacking community. Within minutes, an enormous white tailed eagle swooped down This more bike-friendly course takes in smaller roads on the West Coast, that motorhomes and caravans can't go on and away from the busy A9 on the East Coast, as well as including the beautiful Black Isle. This is the continuation of Katie Palmer's story on her North 500 trip with her husband Ian. This slightly alternative North Coast 500 was made in collaboration with the people behind the official driving route, to make an official NC500 Cycle Route. This 500-mile loop around the North Highland coast is perfect cycling country. We whooshed down the descent to Applecross, and rather than the five-minute break we'd allowed ourselves on our first North Coast 500 ride, spent a lengthy 45 minutes in the picturesque Walled Garden Tearooms, wolfing down tea and scones, and enjoying seeing our own glow of triumph mirrored in the faces of our riding buddies. It’s likely you won’t see a single vehicle on this scenic south-to-north route, which uses forest-service roads and doubletrack to crisscross Coast Mountain wilderness. Seven nights; eight days of cycling on quiet, single-track paved roads along the new North Coast 500 route from Strathcarron to Inverness via John O’ Groats. Just because the GPS says it will take you an hour to get from Lochinver … Had a great time touring around the Scottish highlands, tough conditions but worth it! I’m hoping to do this over 9-10 days next year. We inspire and inform through original bikepacking routes, stories, and coverage of the gear, news, and events that make our community thrive. Tom Campbell, Managing Director of the North Coast 500, said: “After completing all 516 miles of the route back in 2015, then returning earlier this year on a ‘bikepacking’ adventure with Global Cycling Network, one of the world’s biggest online cycling brands, we’re delighted to welcome Mark back to the North Coast 500 this summer. North Coast 500 (Alternative) This was ride that Andy and I had discussed last year with a view to doing it in September 2017, but due to the rubbish weather it never happened. Posted by Bikepacking NZ May 12, 2019 Posted in Uncategorized. Skyler Des Roches created this route in 2014 to experience everything from the coastal lowlands outside of Vancouver to the high alpine of British Columbia’s Chilcotin region. You might have to go back to tick off John O'Groats on another trip, because this inland option is much more cycling friendly and makes the east coast of the NC500 as scenic as the west! Mark and Si on their NC500 3-day epic © Mark Beaumont In 2015, Scottish multiple record-breaking round-the-world cyclist Mark Beaumont rode the North Coast 500 in a superhuman 38 hours. Unless, like adventurer, broadcaster and Cycling UK member Mark Beaumont, you do it in 38 hours. The North Coast 500 (The NC500) is an official route created by the North Highland Initiative to “bring together the best of the north Highlands of Scotland in one iconic tour”. There is a 519 mile road route, running in a circular loop from Inverness in the east, cross country to the west, up the coast, across the northern highlands and back down the east coast from John O’Groats. 802 km. You can read the first part of the story here and second part here. Carry enough supplies along this part of the North Coast 500, as villages are few and far between. 21.8 km/h. To ride this route in three days really pushes the daily distances (although the first time I rode the route non-stop in 37 hours and 8 minutes, which definitely took the fun out of it)! Print. Leaving Inverness is fairy flat and through farmland for the first few hours until you reach the first lochs and sea lochs of the west coast. In association with Visit Scotland (#ScotlandIsNow), 3T, Apidura & Altura. Bikepacking is generally in the backcountry, but you can backpack on local trails. This is the third and last part of Katie Palmer's story on her North 500 trip with her husband Ian. Read More NC500 Cycle Tour with Wilderness Scotland Read More Achnagairn Estate Set on 30 acres, 7 miles away from Inverness city centre, the estate provides a perfect escape for the NC500 visitor. 186 votes, 29 comments. Clynelish Distillery Nestled in the countryside of the tranquil coastal village of Brora, Clynelish is a perfect stop on your NC500 journey. I'm planning on doing the same route next year this time. Popular with motorists and motor homers, we think the best way to experience the NC500 is by bicycle. The next morning we started heading West. Export To GPS Device. This is probably the most challenging and hilly section of the route, but once you reach Durness at the top, things do start to flatten out a bit as you head east. Si's 3T Exploro For The Scotland North Coast 500 Bikepacking Ride Published on April 28th 2019. Happy watching. Quiet roads, a beautiful climb, the small roads inland to Lairg and a fast blast around the Black Isle. Factor in Stops for Photos. Based on your experience would you recommend any deviations from the official route? The Travel Channel explores some of the best bikepacking – the marriage of ultra-light backpacking and off-road bicycle touring – routes in the United States. Create a Copy of This Tour. An inspiring Road based bikepacking adventure. This ride visits some of the Outlander TV show/book sites. Plenty of roadside food and drinks so don't overpack, Lots of cool camping spots in settlements so don't think wild means in the mountains. Check its opening times. Fancy cycling 516 miles and 11,000m of ascent through epic lands The 10 mile Ben Alder singletrack is a sublime bit of trail riding; The bleak yet stunning Northern Loop is a quintessential example of the Northern Highlands landscape; Fisherfield Forest, a great wilderness in the deepest corner of the Highlands between Loch Maree and Little Loch Broom, void of civilisation for miles in all directions. Scottish bikepacking adventure Bike Touring Collection by Mark Beaumont Twenty-seven years later, the North Highland Initiative created a 500-mile route around Scotland’s most northerly coastal roads. 36:46. The traditional NC500 route to John O'Groats becomes a bit of a commute back to Inverness on the often busy A9, whereas this route that cuts inland is constantly changing and stunning. The ever-changing landscape will take your breath away, leaving you eager to get back in the saddle wanting more every day. Cycling at Lake Millstätter See – the Jewel of Carinthia. The North Coast. I would cut inland a bit to get some more terrain in rather than do the east coast. Bikepacking the North Coast 500 with a smile on his face and a spring in his step is the indomitable Barry Godin, taking in some of the finest scenery, passes and coastal trails that Scotland has to offer on board his trusty fat bike. — The North Coast 500 is one the UK’s most scenic road trips so you don’t want to forget your camera and an extra battery. “This was a truly wonderful trip – fun, relaxing, physically challenging, and beautiful. with food and camping and such. Bikepacking Setup Tailfin T1 Carbon Rack and Super Light Pannier Bags For this ride, I … Stunning scenery, some very quiet roads and amazing beaches if you have time to stop. Mrs Felltop is in correspondence with them, and they seem to be receptive to ideas. Climb the north tower for 360 degree views of Inverness and the surrounding area, plus find out some intriguing myths and legends about the city (today the castle is a court and otherwise not open to the public). 6 autumn cycling routes in Brandenburg on Fontane's traces, Cycling through the heart of Switzerland – the Herzroute, Hiking in Bernese Oberland — where Goethe left his mark. This route has been recently branded the “North Coast 500” and has been a … Took a campingsite once in a while or are there some fresh waters to bath in? He felt however that some parts could be more cyclist-friendly and in 2019 decided to develop an alternative 505-mile option that’s better for bike-packers. The route was officially launched in … Starting Point. North Coast 500 - Scotland Bikepacking Adventure with Mark Beaumont. Yesterday I posted some tips for cycling the North Coast 500 and today I will talk about the gear. Take five run-of-the-mill cyclists, throw them together on the morning you’re setting off on a 500-mile journey through the Highlands and see how they get on. We believe travel by bicycle has the power to encourage conservation, inclusivity, and respect for all people and cultures. Press J to jump to the feed. North Coast 500. You don't need a lot, apart from a good bikepacking setup, especially if you don't plan to camp. Other than John O’Groats, we were yet to see much evidence of the over-crowding issues that the NC500 has supposedly created. Defo do every bit of single track you can do on the west coast its amazing. Scotland's North Coast 500 route is gaining a bit of a reputation for itself. It was decided during the dreary month of Jan that we should get a date in the diary for early 2018 and go and ride it regardless of what weather gets thrown at us. Bikepacking Scotland’s North Coast 500 In Three Days | Si’s Ultra Endurance Challenge. North Coast 500 - Scotland Bikepacking Adventure with Mark Beaumont. 802 km. Cycling the North Coast 500 April 24, 2017 April 23, 2017 John Davidson 0 Comments. North Coast 500 £1145 per person Cycling 500 miles around the Scottish coastline in 7 days is a tough ride but the spectacular scenery that you will cycle past is worth every pedal stroke. 8,170 m. 8,150 m. Share. To read the first part of the story click here. There is a prevailing north easterly wind here, so you may have a bit of a headwind if riding anti-clockwise (which most people do). Video from bikepacking the North Coast 500 in Scotland last week. Any top planning tips from your journey thus far? Share this: Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) The route starts and finishes at Inverness Castle and is 516 miles long. Share: What set up would you choose for 500 miles around the Scottish Coastline? Scotland’s North Coast 500 is probably the best bike ride I have ever done. 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