Tour # 14.
Isle Of Arran (clockwise)
Approx. total hill climb: 500 meters.
Highest point: Lochranza - Corrie 200 meters above sea level.
Severity Rating: *****
Fun rating: ******
How to get to Isle Of Arran: Train from Glasgow to Ardrossan (1
hour). Ferry from Ardrossan to Brodick (50 minutes).
This is THE classic cycle trip in the West Of Scotland. It is a
true classic in any standards or meaning of the word. This cycle trip
has got it's reputation mainly due to the south coast of Arran. This
is one of the most desperate undulating stretches of road anywhere
in Scotland. The road around Arran is quite bad and ideal for a bike.
The road itself is quite dirty and bumpy and demands the utmost respect.
The landscape on a sunny day is simply breathtaking and alone worth
the whole trip. This cycle trip is highly, highly recommended. The
train from Glasgow to Ardrossan and the ferry to Arran also makes
this a very special experience.
Take the road to the left (south) when you have left the ferry quay
in Brodick (shops). The road is steep and sets the tone for the rest
of the tour. The road goes over a hill to Lamlash (shops). Then the
road goes up over a small hill again to Whiting Bay (shops). The views
are breath taking and the same is the gradient of the road. But the
real extreme road comes after leaving Whiting Bay. This 20 km. long
stretch is one of the most desperate undulating stretches of road
anywhere in Scotland. The road goes steep up from Whiting Bay and
around the corner to the south coast of Arran. The road follows a
terrace high above the sea. The cycling is very technical difficult
with a lot of short, very sharp climbs and descents. The worst descent
comes at Kilmory (shops) where your brakes will be severely tested.
The road from Kilmory rises again to it reaches the west coast of
Arran. The road from the corner between the south and the west coast
to Blackwaterfoot (shops) is medium undulating. The road from Blackwaterfoot
up the west coast starts with a moderate climb, but it then flattens
out and most of the road is flat. The view across to the Kintyre peninsula
is interesting. If you are lucky, you will see seals in the sea along
the road up to Lochranza (shops). This small village is scenic. The
Isle Of Arran whisky distillery 2 kilometers further up the road is
at the foot at the desperate steep mountain going over to Sannox and
Corrie. The views along this climb is good and include the odd red
dear and sheep. The descent down the other side is fast and furious.
The road rises again for a while (after a crossing a bridge) just
before it goes down into a vertical drop to Sannox. The road down
past Corrie (shops) to Brodick is flat and a fantastic view towards
the Clyde coast. If you have time to spare before the ferry, the beach
and the shops in Brodick is worthy a visit.