Sanquhar, Meldon Hills,
Gorebridge, National Mining Museum, Edinburgh, Scotland.
(4 day bike-pack)
Mon 16 Nov - Thu 19 Nov
I left home on the bike just after 05:30am and cycled to Preston Railway Station where I arrived at
06:20. I’m heading for Sanquhar in Scotland and by buying my ticket
last week I’ve made a considerable saving. The total journey for a
senior single cost £8.90.
Preston Railway Station
We left on time at 06:40 to Carlisle.
Here I changed to the Glasgow via Dumfries train which left from
platform 8. It was due to leave at 08:15 but was a couple of minutes
It was very windy at Carlisle and also
very cold. The weather was clear and I was still clear when I
reached Sanquhar at 09:20am.
Carlisle, the train to Sanquhar
I was the only person to get off but a few others got
on. It was still cold and windy as I set off through the small town.
Part of my food supplies were some Tortelloni pastas and some
chopped chirizzo sausage which I’d measured out in day size packs.
Unfortunately I’d left them at home in the fridge. Cycling through
the main street I found a shop where I hoped to buy some. As I
stopped an old man came up and asked how far I’d come.
I explained I
was just starting and calling to buy some supplies. He was very
interested in my journey and told me my bike would be safe parked
outside the shop. I called in and was able to buy the stuff I’d left
at home. The cost was considerably more. At home the pasta was £1.60
and here £2.50. I emerged from the shop and the man was still there.
He seemed to be looking after my bike. I continued SE along the busy
main road. After a few miles I reached Mennock then thankfully
turned left on to the B797 which had hardly any traffic.
I was now climbing steadily in the
bottom of a deep valley. The wind was now behind me and helping me
on the climb.
I had about 6miles of
climbing and a couple of steep sections before reaching the high
point. Just ahead I came to Wenlockhead which is a small village
originally for the lead mining industry in the area. I followed a
side road to look at an old preserved beam engine which was a very
large structure immediately by the road. It was originally built to
lift water out of Margaret vein of the lead mines below.
the main road and the final steep climb to the highest point and the
border where I left Dumfries & Galloway and entered Lanarkshire. I
had an easy downhill freewheel into the village of Leadhills. For a
while I could see the narrow gauge railway to my right which is open
during the summer months. I turned right in the village on to the
B7040 heading towards Elvanfoot. There was a steady climb for a
while then a long descent. I reached the A702 which was very busy
with a lot of large Lorries. As I reached the underpass under the
M74 it started to rain heavily. With full waterproofs on I turned
right along the B707 which was just as busy as the A road. It was
hard riding in to the headwind and rain but fortunately there was
soon a wide cycle track I could use. As the rain stopped I felt my
rear tyre was getting soft.
I stopped by the entrance to a wind
farm where I pumped it up to see how long it would last. After about
a mile it was down again and too soft to ride. There was nothing for
it but to do a repair. It’s the second rear wheel puncture I’ve had
with my new Surly bike. I removed the inner tube but couldn’t find
anything through the tyre wall. I replaced the repaired inner tube
from my first puncture, pumped up and was on my way again. I took a
left turn over the M74 then right to start a steady climb through
areas of felled trees. I reached the A701 and turned sharply left to
start a steady climb to my planned camp for the day. After a few
miles I reached the stream I’d seen on the map and climbed steeply
down to fill 2, 2lt plastic bottles. Just ahead I turned left up a
short forestry track to my planned camp. It was out of sight of the
road and had a faint intermittent phone signal that I could use