Bumped into an old work colleague in the Gleneagles filling station t’other day. He was heading up to Braemar with a few of his mates on various bikes so I tagged on at the back.
It turned out to be a nice easy ride up by Blairgowrie and onto some minor roads winding over and through the hills north of Alyth including Glen Isla.
These guys like their scoff and introduced me to one of the best cafe/restaurants ever. Situated on a back road by a loch – next to Tigh na Lochan – which probably means ‘by the loch’ as I had the dam wall at my back while waiting for the guys to mount up.
Unfortunately one of the gang enjoyed his lunch so much that he managed to topple off his tall Africa Twin as he was leaving the sloping car park. His crash bars took the brunt of the fall over the low-side but were obviously made of ‘chocolat’ as they bent on contact. The rider wasn’t so fortunate and appeared to have damaged his shoulder in the fall but gamely gathered his wits about him and rode on.
It wasn’t to be long before the pain and discomfort got to him and after a brief discussion he turned south with an escort when we emerged from the glens onto the main north/south road next to Glenshee Visitor Centre.
We never did reach Braemar but the remaining trio rode the day out over that great hill road connecting to Pitlochry and the A9 to Dunkeld and home for me via Amulree and the Sma’ Glen.