Monday 29 August 2016


This weekend we are normally in Belgium for the Begonia Rally but this year for a variety of reasons we couldn't go so we decided to spend the bank holiday weekend in Ardnamurchan. Pressures of work (yes I know ridiculous!) meant we left on Saturday to head up the A82, luckily we avoided some of the insanity by going up via the back road to Comrie then joining the A82 at Lochearnhead. The polizia were out in force trying to extract money and causing misery to mainly motorcyclists from what I could see. Gav Smith was standing half way through the village having obviously been pulled, I shouted encouragement and stopped short of a rant about facists and dubious parentage! Now I understand the dangers of speeding but every year the constabulary go out and generally make themselves a nuisance by proactively targeting motorcyclists, it really pisses me off, when was the last time you saw a very badly driven car or motorhome being pulled, never I'd say. The pattern was repeated all the way to Fort William with sleekit bobbies hiding in hedges hoping to make someones day even more miserable than it already is because the roads are so congested with retarded tourists. Anyhow after crossing the Corran ferry to the peninsula life got immediately better, empty roads and quite splendid roads at that. We camped at Sunart camping at Strontian, the owner is also a keen motorcyclist so as well as the site being clean, well kept and nice facilities knowing you are helping a fellow motorcyclist earn a living is the icing on the cake.
A couple arrived on a Vstrom, Ian and Fiona from Gourock, nice people and we shared a few drinks on the Saturday night in the local pub (well more than a few!!) Another rant, I often wonder why Applecross is so busy and popular whereas The Ardnamurchan peninsula is so quiet despite it being arguably  every bit as nice and in fact easier to get to. I got my answer on the Friday night when we almost didn't get fed as they were "busy, it's a bank holiday weekend!" now thankfully we did get fed but over the weekend I saw many groups of people being turned away, in my mind ridiculous and unfortunately I can probably guarantee not many of these people will return. So if your heading up (which you should) book a meal or take your own!
Ian and the two Fionas and I retired to the bothy on site for a few more drams after closing time which is just what we all needed. I have to say the weather on Sunday was outstanding so I took full advantage by doing nothing, perfect. Another (but thankfully quieter) night in the pub Sunday and more banter with the locals and our new Gourock pals meant I could almost face the midges this morning! A fantastic run down the road, eerily quiet and one of these days when you just never get held up and in sunshine, perfect weekend again!
The Mandello mauler ready for the off
Corran ferry, escape from the masses
Guzzi having a cruise
Land ahoy Captain
Our weekend house!
Fi pulling faces
Pretty sunset
Surprised to see this Tesla in the campsite, I got the full rundown from the owner who is very impressed, drove up from London that day with 3 electric stops (and they were camping!)
Ian & Fiona prepared to go escape the midges
Empty roads
With nice bends 
Fi disembarking
Glencoe & sunshine, perfect

Sunday 21 August 2016

Norton Applecross weekend

Another highly successful Applecross weekend for the mighty Norton Owners club (Tay Valley Branch) , a great turnout, especially nice to see Tim & Linda Harrison make their first trip to the Peninsula, as well of course our visitors from far and near. The run up on Friday was good, rain threatened but never came to anything until we got over the Bealach. Fi was piloting the chair with Gill in the tub so progress was at times impeded by the moronic idiots let loose on our roads for their holidays, the curse of the Motor-home, caravan and badly driven car is still evident. The midges though were having a field day, Alan from Hull seemed to be a target and was suffering, nothing worse than the Scottish midge when they are after blood! The rain on Friday ensured we spent all night in the pub which isn't a bad thing. Saturday Laurenne masterchef prepared breakfast and the sun was out shining brightly, most of us sat around all day talking nonsense some took the advantage and went for a bimble around. Norrie then decided it was beer o clock so pub again to sit outside (unusual for me) a great meal with 20 of us at the walled garden and copius amounts of banter and beer then back to the pub for last orders. I wasn't drunk but somehow managed to leave my wallet in the bar, I never noticed at all but when I stopped at Ballinluig I got a text from brother John saying he had my wallet. The staff (Caroline I think) had come up to the campsite looking for me, Luckily John was still packing up! A fantastic weekend with great company, good laughs and no issues with the bikes, all good!
The V11 running particularly well after a service and tune up!
Our latest member Jim Flannigan's bike
Simon, up from Coventry
Looks like summer! L-R Davie Jim Simon and Ian (all the way from Ireland) 
Norrie announcing beer time
Alan the midge's favourite person
I never tire of this view
Rain on Skye & the cullins to the left
Sunshine over the church to the right
pretty and sunny
Highland cows and deer happily co existing
It did rain later so I could get a rainbow photo
Bert arrived with his truck, luckily for us a he carried the kitchen!