Travellers' Tales: Our Scottish coast to coast

Anne and friends toast a successful trip with a shot of whisky at the finish
Anne Smillie and five companions rode 112 miles across Scotland.

As a long-time fan of Josie Dew’s cycling adventures, I realised a dream recently when five enthusiastic ladies, Pat, Eunice, Jackie, Muriel and Susi – all from Cycle Ayrshire (formerly Ayrshire CTC) – joined me to cycle from Annan to Musselburgh over three days.

Travelling by train to Annan, we started the ride at the old Solway Viaduct embankment. Soon we were cycling past places we had only read about: Brydekirk, Hoddomcross, St Mungo’s. By the time we reached Applegarthtown Church, the sun came out. Duly refreshed and refuelled, we continued on to our B&B at Moffat.

We knew day two would be hard as we would be pushing pannier-laden bikes up a steep, stony path to reach the A701 and the Devil’s Beef Tub. A beautiful autumn morning saw us taking to the Old Edinburgh Road with enthusiasm. Did we pack light enough? Would we manage the climb? Yes! We reached the summit, which had a lovely rainbow above and a stupendous view of the Annan Valley below, then descended to Peebles, our second stop.

Our last day took us along the beautiful Tweed Valley Railway Path and up to the summit of the Moorfoot Hills. The views over the Forth spurred us on to the finish, where we had a malt whisky toast and a fish supper. Perfect.