After a sound sleep we got away at 09:50 for the long slog up Durness Pass with drizzle turning to rain and a strong headwind to hinder our progress. The scenery would have been wonderful on a sunny day but the low mist hid the peaks. The café at Scourie was closed so we called in at the hotel for respite from the cold and damp, where we met two German cyclists from Hamburg who were heading north. Beer is never a good idea at lunchtime on a cycling holiday but the Fullers London Pride was impossible to resist. After the other cyclists had left, we chatted to another German couple – they were touring in a motorcycle/sidecar combination, much to the amusement of the local youths as we left the pub together.

We pressed on to Kylesku where the backpackers hostel was basic but clean and comfortable. [It’s since been upgraded to lodges] Christine and I shared a twin-bedded room while Rowan shared with Jill, a keen walker and lecturer at UMIST in Manchester. The third room was occupied by a young German couple touring by car.

Rest day at Kylescu