Well after what seems like days travelling on planes, trains and automobiles we have finally arrived at destination Sea View Hotel, John O'Groats.
I don't think today could be any further from what the ideal pre challenge day could be. Loaded with our pack lunches and luggage we set off to Cardiff airport. In full holiday spirit we embraced the bar for a quick drink and boarded what look like a toy plane. While we chatted with feelings of excitement and nervousness, someone in the group was overheard asking what the time difference in Scotland was (they shall remain anonymous, but I have no doubt that such comments will be frequent during the next two weeks!).
The brief stop in Edinburgh train station allowed for the replenishment of picnic supplies, thankfully a Marks & Spencer's was nearby and I think we bought them out of the buckets of Rocky Roads and Chocolate Cakes. Needless to say, most of it was gone by the time the train had even started moving. As the train slowly moved its way through the Scotitish Highlands the challenge ahead seemed to have dawned on us all, with Caroline in particular showing signs of hysteria as the train stopped at Aviemore, the Scottish ski resort.
Arriving at Inverness we looked for more food and found a chip shop that was very happy as our order reached 10 Burgers and Chips! Rather than stacking up on carbohydrates, the sensible attitude, we seem to have adopted a boxing approach, by eating as much fatty food as we can to stack on some weight before round one starts. We shall be sure to inform 0lance should this method of attack prove successfull!
The final stage of our trek took place on a mini bus and everyone seemed to adopt the approaxh of 'ignorance is bliss' by taking part in an impromptu team nap as the hills started to appear. Although as we got closer to John O'Groats we were informed by the driver that we could open our eyes as we weren't likely to see anything through the thick fog and sleet we were driving through!
Meanwhile the men have accomplished something great already by getting the camper van and trailer equipped with kit and Esthers wadrobe up in one piece!
I'll post some photos of our journey and first day on the bike tomorrow!
Sunday, 25 July 2010
Officially less than one week to go until the 740 mile ride kicks off and today we managed the last training ride before carb overload this week, a healthy diet of Pasta, Potatoes and Rice.
Julian, Geoff, Paul & Simon are driving the van up on Friday whilst the others are flying to Edinburgh, train to Inverness and then a bus to Wick on Saturday, all ready for the 8am start on Sunday.
Early weather forecasts are quite encouraging, although we are still holding out for a strong southern wind to give us that extra bit of help!
Fundraising efforts are going strong and the £20,000 mark is nearly reached but please feel free to keep giving, it all goes to a worthy cause and extra money will help spur us on!
Will keep you updated daily with our tales and tribulations, if our training is anything to go by there should be lots!