Some time ago i sowed the seed in a few pals minds to join me in doing the Short, 30 miler Cairn O’Mount challenge. They had all started doing some cycling and I figured this would be a target to go for. Only a pal called Tony bit and signed up.

Tony did the training, me too and with one week to go had done a flat 30 miler so the only variable was now the Angus hills and Tony remembering to lay of the dodgy tins of curry the day before.

After much rain and weather watching the day was dry but with a brisk westerly wind which would be our headwind to start.

Registration done and bog visited to lesson Tony’s nervousness we got the start briefing and headed off. The first few miles were slow into the wind. saw one stranded cyclist and offered assistance but he was just adjusting his saddle and was tooled for the job. Onwards following the pink signs. We pass two ladies walking with their bikes but all is ok just a pothole had lost them their momentum. Me leading the way looking round checking I hadn’t dropped Tony or just cycling side by side gassing. Past the baby Christmas trees Tony catches sight of the road to the final climb but that is for later. Downhill now and enjoying the break from the headwind. Bit of the route coming back to me from 3 years previous.

Our tour of Angus continues to the most westerly point and my WLR earworm begins as does the foothills of Glen Ogil! Pit stop approaches bang on half way and a jelly baby refuel is in order 2 solo cyclist blast past and then a couple on a tandem pull in to stop.

I had faint hopes of getting a photo of Tony on the Glen Ogil climb but by the time i stopped i forgot. It turns out i also stopped just before the end of a strava segment! Tony has found is climbing mojo of standing up rather then seated climbing and we find fresh tarmac too. WLR is still ringing in my ear. The wind has now dropped and this second half of the route is by far the most enjoyable even with a long muddy section which had even been noted in our start briefing. Some r a f tarmac and we are back the the Christmas tree section ready for the final 8 miles. Tony had been having some gear issues but found if was down to too much chain cross from little to little stopping changing into big chain ring so that improved matters and pace. Quite a steep decent came upon us and we both thought the tandem stoker must have needed trust to blindly go down. Top dressed tarmac by the castle made for an interesting final section but the Edzell 30 soon approached. I’m not overly competitive but as Tony had caught me napping earlier in the day and got a 30 no way was he getting this one 🙂

Good fun all round and a mid table finish time and WLR has stopped. Tony i believe enjoyed it more relief at the end that the hills hadn’t been as bad was he had expected.

I did spy Simon hunting for a parking space as we were getting ready to start and he was off on the 80 miler.

PS. WLR – The AC/DC song Whole Lotta Rosie where the audience chant Angus!

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