Coast to Coast Day 4: Fort A to Newtonmore
Over the Corrieyairack Pass and then some more
I went over the Corrieyairack Pass in July on foot (during the race) and it didn't seem to take too long. Going over by bike was a bit of a different matter but my 'tortoise' pace seemed to pay off and we all made it up eventually to have our lunch on the summit, 700m up from Fort Augustus. Luckily the descent made it all worth while for me and Adam but slightly 'emotional' for Elspeth with bald tyres, no brake pads and precious little suspension.
We'd known that all our brakes were getting a bit dodgy from the day before but none of us had thought to bring spare brake pads. Obviously my experiences at Strathpuffer haven't taught me anything. The mud had just cleaned the brakes of any pad at all and in Elspeth's case had actually worn right through the metal backing entirely. We made it to the bike shop at Laggan Wolftrax (handy!) and the man there was amazed and appalled at the state of our brakes. I think he's probably still dining out on our story. A hot chocolate and new set of brakes later and we were off again. We had a bit of a judgement call about continuing on road to Newtonmore (10km) or taking the long way round through Glen Buchie. Obviously we took the long way round and were rewarding with stunning views and beautiful riding then later a 2mile trudge through bogland. We were VERY grateful when it became a double-lined 'track' rather than a single lined 'path' on the map.