Helen was on her way to Oban this morning —
Thanks Helen – stay safe 👍😊
I go all nostalgic when I’m riding the Royal Enfield 350 Classic – today I couldn’t help but turn off the main drag to Perth I was using as a starter for Dunkeld and beyond —
Up on the hill – Fowlis Wester has a pseudo Pictish stone behind railings as a centrepiece for the village square – the real stone from 7th or 8th century AD is kept in the church centre left —
The low cloud chased me farther up into the hills to the north and by the time I had my phone/camera all buttoned up it had enveloped me —
But not for long as I scampered over the salt and grit strewn roads – stopping only for a swift pic of the falls on the River Almond above a broken down ancient bridge on the way to Logiealmond via Harrietfield —
In a change of plan en route I had decided to ride to Dunkeld via the ford in the hills at Little Glenshee – thick low cloud caught me on the single track and a quick turnabout had me heading south again on another detour —
Thats when I spotted this farm sign for Drumharrow which jogged something in my memory banks – 75 years ago exactly I had been living here and helping my mother pick tatties as my father ploughed them up using three Clydesdale horses towing a tattie digger up and down the drills. I remember it as a muddy place then and it still is today – only the machinery has changed for I met a huge tractor and trailer loaded with tattie boxes filling that muddy track today —
Time for another turnaround and heading for home – squinting into the setting sun via Monzie Castle – at least there was enough daylight left to let me wash the salt off the RE350 after she had cooled 🤠
Light the f-flippin’ f-f-fire 🔥 —
It’s f-f-f-freezin’ in here!
Pics by Helen 22/11/2022 👍
The wee 350cc single cylinder motor in the Classic is turbine smoothe at any of the revs I have used so far. I think I read somewhere that this is down to it having two balancer shafts but I may have been reading about another bike – my auld heid doesn’t always retain the minutiae for long these days.
Whatever – there isn’t even a tremor through the seat – footpegs – narrow bars and mirrors. This would be great if I wanted a closeup view of my barn door shoulders which were useful for knocking people down as a flying wing forward on the rugby field. Not so easy to tuck out of the way when I raced motorbikes during a mid-life crisis in my later years.
No worries – help is at hand in a box down in my shed where I have a pair of Yamaha V-Max mirrors that last saw the light of day over twenty years ago on my first XJR 1300SP. The chrome is still as good as new and luckily Royal Enfield have used the same right and lefthand thread on their mirrors too —
Sorted! I found them a life-saver during the initial slow-paced ‘running in’ – with every second vehicle in these country districts being a tunnel visioned White Van Man running to a computer programmed delivery schedule.
So what’s next? Probably a tidy set of pannier bags if I can find ’em – so I don’t have to swing my gammy leg over that tailpack full of tools and ‘just-in-case’ stuff that I insist on running with. One of the drawbacks of being ‘old school’ 🤠
One thing I didn’t expect when I bought the wee Royal Enfield was the amount of attention it gets when parked up in the street – any street – mostly from folks who had bikes – or were wives of bikers in their far-off youth —
It must be something to do with the registration number which is at least fifty years old – perhaps more 🤠
With apologies to Snow Patrol for stealing their thunder – but now that my RE350 Classic has a few hundred miles under its’ wheels the motor is loosening up and I can spin her over without feeling she might tighten up or fall apart.
Nice to know she will hold her own on dual carriageways and easily sit with the traffic on ‘A’ roads. Bend swinging on lesser roads comes easy to the Classic – the limiting factor being ma heid as I have never used these OEM Ceat tyres she is shod with before. Suffice to say they haven’t given the slightest twitch even on our cold and wet leaf strewn November roads.
Roll on Spring when she’s fully run in and no doubt fitted with some of my favourite rubber – availability of tyres in the correct sizes will be the deciding factor when that time comes —
I’ve got to thank Royal Enfield for taking me back to old-style biking where even the cup of tea and the after-ride washdown becomes one of life’s pleasures 😊👍
The shed door is open for the first time in ten days – feels more like ten weeks but Saree was pleased to see me.
She fired up at first touch of the red switch and burbled away while I forced my old Shark helmet on —
I’m sure ma heid has swollen since I bought that smart lid —
No worries .. after an enjoyable ride over Braco Moors and a real nice cappo in the local cafe I will feel no pain on the next part of my ride 😊