Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Gifford and the Lammermuirs

High in the Lammermuirs and the heather has turned.

This flat-topped moorland plateau is traversed by quiet roads, of which the B6355 carries National Cycle Route 1, the cycle route that follows the North Sea coast. (The A1 follows the actual coast but is unpleasant and dangerous for cyclists.) 'Allez Evans' it says at the top of a steep climb, painted on the road surface by a cycling fan.

National Route 1:

To the south, the road gradually folds you closer into the Borders, winding down with the Whiteadder towards the Merse and the Tweed.

To the north, the lowlands of East Lothian, pale with ripened wheat.

Continue pedalling and you reach Gifford, basking in rare autumn sunshine.

Is this even Scotland? It is the kind of village you would not know existed if you knew only North Lanarkshire or Clydebank. Yet in East Lothian, it is typical. Direlton, Aberlady, Stenton, East Linton, Saltoun, Gifford, Pencaitland...

Gifford Hall:

From the bar of the village hotel, the sounds of the Rugby World Cup on TV. Cyclists on the green, refuelling and adjusting their wheels.

I am more used to wishing to be in the Highlands in this weather. But if you have to spend a beautiful autumn day in the Lowlands, you can do worse than cycling round East Lothian and the Lammermuirs.

The Avenue, Gifford:

1 comment:

The Weekend Traveller said...

I tried to look for your FB page so I get reminded when you post but I found none. Nice blog.