So Ron finally got his way, & the VERY long trip took place.
Since your normal editor was considering whether he was having a heart attack or otherwise- he decided not to go- wise move.
AND SO- Ron takes up the story & fotos also supplied by Ron & Dave, but input by Norrie
Despite the variable weather forecast of sunshine and showers 12 people on 9 bikes arrived in Biggar. As most had travelled for an hour from the greater Glasgow area, hunger was the main concern and they headed straight to the Coffee Spot to top up the calories.
This meant a later than expected start from Biggar. We decided to use the drop off system, which Ron had never used as a group leader. He later confessed that his preferred position is tail end Charlie. The route took us to our first scheduled stop at Cardrona via Broughton, Stobo and Peebles. Les and Ron who had missed out at the unscheduled coffee stop in Biggar, missed out again as the masses weren’t ready for another break. There were also some murmurs about the ride being slow, so Ron stepped up a gear for the rest of the day.
The next stop was at Scott’s View. This is an excellent panoramic viewpoint, with a superb vista over to the Eildon Hills and Melrose with Selkirk and Galashiels in the far distance.
We continued on the smooth and quiet border back roads with lovely open bends to Kelso, where we had a planned fuel stop with JH friendly pumps, with the option of paying in the kiosk.
We left Kelso and headed for Bamburgh via Coldstream. Just before Coldstream, stands a bright yellow box, just waiting to catch the unwary. This was pointed out by the ride leader, but JH who was towards the end of the group seemed determined to gain some more ‘Performance Points’. We all had a chuckle about this on our arrival in Bamburgh, as JH also missed the huge ‘Welcome to England’ sign after crossing the bridge as we left Coldstream. Little wonder he can’t spot those little yellow boxes. Specsavers comes to mind.
The castle at Bamburgh is magnificent and stands on a hill dominating the town. Most of the group were first time visitors to the area and were impressed by the view. Bamburgh is a favourite tourist spot and the village is always busy. The car park at the foot of the castle was jammed full with fellow tourists, but fortunately we had the dedicated motorcycle parking space to ourselves. As the town was so busy Ron phoned the local hostelry and was surprised to hear they could actually accommodate a group of 12 for lunch.
On the walk up to the pub Tony commented on how he could smell the change in culture. Just to be clear meaning the sweet smell of village greens, cricket and pubs. Banter and an excellent lunch was enjoyed by all.
We had a dry ride all the way down, but as we left the pub the heavens opened and it rained (making the 5 mile stretch of the A1 even more miserable than usual) all the way back to our final coffee stop in Melrose. And what a good value stop it turned out to be with a coffee or tea and a yummy calorie filled muffin for slightly less than £3.00 per head. We continued on damp roads most of the way home with the group going their separate way just outside of Peebles.Photos taken by Ron and David Mc Donald.