I’m sliding backwards down a mountain, staring at the sky rushing by. This is not a dream. And, despite the build-up of snow finding its way into my trousers, it’s not a nightmare either. There’s a bloke with an axe, though. It’s me! I thrust out an arm and jab it into the icy slope. My body whips round and over and suddenly I’m sliding face down and feet first. That’s better. I bury the ice-axe into the snow again, and finally come to a panting halt halfway down the icy slope.
SCOTLAND has some of the best cycling routes in the world. Too many, perhaps. Where to start? Here, Harry, author of numerous best selling books on cycling in Scotland, including 101 Bike Routes in Scotland, picks his ‘best of’, selecting his highest, flattest, most challenging, technical, northerly, southerly and most hilly route.
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Opinions vary on skiing and snowboarding in Scotland. Generally we like to knock it. Even those who, at the first sight of snow, routinely head for Glenshee, Cairngorm, Nevis Range, Glencoe or the Lecht, take part in the national sport of slagging off what’s on our doorstep.
THERE'S getting away from it all. Then there’s caving. And then there’s cave diving. It is, as Morrissey once said, really serious. Really, really serious. Think about it. As if the idea of caving - crawling through the underworld, in caves, mines, pot holes and passages up to a mile underground, and possibly previously unexplored - wasn’t terrifying enough. You don’t need to be in possession of a nervous disposition to realise this.
Another day’s paddling, another minor injury picked up... Maybe I’m getting too old for this carry on. I was nursing a sore back after getting a flat landing from an eight-metre fall on the middle section of the river Etive.
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