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Discussion in 'Touring' started by James85, Jul 29, 2019.

  1. Change of plans and not gonna make the Classic TT. Planning doing the NC500 instead. 14th - 18th August. Any advice? Places to stay? Etc etc.
  2. Thread moved
  3. Applecross camping huts are great, the bunkhouse at Durness and if you’re heading down to Fort Augustus then Morags Lodge is brilliant.
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  4. Recently did a trip around the NC500.
    Superb scenery and roads.

    We used https://www.haggistours.co.uk/home to organise the guided tour which was done at a cost that would suit a cross section of budgets and so accomodation tended to be very basic (Haggis Tours usually go a bit more upmarket on digs).

    Our digs and grub arrangements were (some hostels are miles from anywhere and so you need to be prepared to self-cater):
    • Newcastle Airport Travelodge - meal in Toby Carvery;
    • Inverness Youth Hostel - buffet curry in Cinnamon Restaurant;
    • Helmsdale Hostel - meal in the Bannockburn Inn;
    • Kyle of Tongue Hostel - self-catered;
    • Ceilidh Place Bunkhouse - meal in Ceilidh Inn;
    • Broadford Youth Hostel - self-catered;
    • Ben Nevis Bunkhouse - meal in Ben Nevis Inn;
    • Carlisle Travelodge M6 southbound - Dominos pizza delivery.
    Our route was:
    As for stops and sights, some of the highlights were (although the sights are amazing, it was really the riding I was there for):
    Struie Hill, Shin Falls, Dunrobin Castle, Whaligoe Steps, Duncansby Head, John O'Groats, Dunnet Head, Fresgoe, Smoo Cave, Drumbeg, Lochinver, Corrieshalloch Gorge, Shieldaig, Applecross Inn, Bealach na Bà, Kilt Rock, Quiraing, Glenelg Ferry, Spean Bridge Commando Memorial, Ben Nevis, Green Welly Stop Tyndrum.

    (sorry about the bike...not really ;) )

    Mileage was for the full trip, from and back to S London.

    Tips: take insect repellent (Smidge works), travel as light as you can, wear comfortable bike gear but have effective waterproofs and a spare pair of gloves (plastic gloves from fuel pumps make it easier to get wet gloves on and off), make sure your bike is serviced and has good tyres (as in not too worn), take a puncture repair kit and chain lube, watch out for the edges of the roads and potholes when it's raining. Apparently it's a good idea to book accomodation early as what there is can get full.
    #5 Stanford, Jul 30, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
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  5. Avon hand cream is good for midges (bastards)
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  6. I've ridden about 90% of that route, some awesome roads too especially when it's dry. Have fun.:upyeah:
  7. 150F0DBD-9A14-4E62-9E7F-B974957EF68D.jpeg Just back, what a trip. Glasgow to Applecross day 1, up to Durness day 2, Aviemore via John O groats day 3 then back to Glasgow day 4. We camped instead of trying to organise digs. Much more freedom without being tied to plans.
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  8. 5BFABA24-859C-4898-8683-BBE4AC5D41CA.jpeg 0E84E693-B361-40B2-9197-7FB95EA78AEC.jpeg 6D16D705-F1B6-4241-9287-09B62276B218.jpeg 89C7AE5B-017E-4888-9F25-20F1C5392D3D.jpeg
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  9. I’m looking forward to my trip next May, any tips on things to visit, roads to ride etc would be greatly appreciated.
    How did the camping work out?
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  10. I haven't camped since I was a teenager so I was slightly apprehensive however it turned out great and I really enjoyed it.

    Day 1
    We travelled up from Glasgow via Glencoe and Fort William to Applecross. The bealach na ba was amazing. Camped at Applecross campsite and ate in the Applecross Inn.
    Day 2
    We followed the coast road (mostly single track) until joining the A896. Then the A832 to Gairloch then on to A835 to Ullapool. Great roads for making progress on the bikes. Then up to Durness, there is a loop that is part of the official NC500 A837/B869 that goes west and through Drumbeg. We followed it but the B road wasn't the best flowing and the scenery wasn't anything better than the rest of the route. Next time I was probably miss the loop out and stay on the A894 towards Durness. The roads up the west are fantastic.We camped at Durness (Sango sands). Theses a pub/restaurant on site.
    Day 3
    Durness to Aviemore via John o Groats. Another great road. People will say the east coast A99/A9 is rubbish with nothing to see...well from a bikers point of view it is great!! Sweeping bend after bend. Couple of hairpins too. We camped at Aviemore (its a busy place and both sites on the edge of town were fully booked) at Dalriddy campsite a few miles out of town. The Winking Owl is good for food and live music.
    Day 4
    Home to Glasgow.

    For us it was all about the roads and being on the bikes. If I go again with the car and wife then I will spend more time with the tourist attractions etc.
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  11. Thanks James, the trip sounds brilliant.
    I can’t wait to go on mine.
    Camping is something I hadn’t considered till now.
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  12. 78E60A87-529B-4948-9C0B-F97D404BF4F3.jpeg I hadn’t either. Turns out I quite like it. Just bought a tent, sleeping bag, air mattress and pillow from decathlon. Even with the heavy wind and rain at Applecross I was bone dry inside.
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  13. Sign of age :D beats lying on the ground with a rolled up wet leather jacket as a pillow :eek:
    Looks like you camped deep in midge country - what did you use to repel the monsters?
  14. Midges were ok actually, wind kept them away.
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