The No Fuss Events Orange Tour of Ben Nevis route is one of my favourite rides. Kate, Sue and I also got to enjoy brilliant weather and views as well. It was a magnificent ride and the Orange 5 29er was the perfect bike for the trail. We started riding at Lundavra and took the West Highland Way to Mammore Lodge. This is where my bike started to let me down. First up was a big explosion of a flat caused by a rip in my tyre sidewall. I patched it but decided to do a quick run down to Kinlochleven to borrow a tyre for the rest of the ride.
I had another pinch flat going down to Loch Eilde Mor. The ride along the loch was great with a nice tail wind and wild scenery. We got to the river crossing in good time and stopped for a sandwich before wading across the shallow water.
The push up to the next beallach is always a bit of a drag but if you let your mind wander and soak up the scenery it goes well enough. As we started riding again my rear mech wrapped in the spokes and snapped off. So another fix was needed with my spare hanger before the run down to the Lairig bothy. This is some of the best riding you'll ever do because it is in about the most remote place you can think of as well as being really good fun biking.
Yet another pinch flat on the long and exhilarating descent past the minister to Leanachan forest before we took the new forest trails and puggy line all the way back to Fort William in blazing sunshine. A fabulous ride. The girls bikes performed faultlessly, mine was more of a challenge. It just goes to show, you really need a few trail side mechanical skills on a ride like this. It's a long walk back pushing a broken bike!