During a Bank Holiday bike ride yesterday we covered about 50 miles (78km to be precise) from Perth down to Loch Leven by cycling a circular route that took us over the Ochil Hills through Perthshire, Kinross and Fife.
The best part of this tour is that there is very little traffic simply because there are virtually no main roads crossing the Ochil Hills, so for the most part you are sharing the ride with beautiful scenery and wildlife.
Departing from Perth and heading south through Bridge of Earn, the most straight forward bike friendly route is usually through a place called Dron and then up and on to Loch Leven via Glenfarg, but that sharp climb just south of Dron is very steep (so much so that even a cycling legend like Mathieu van der Poel would have to get out of his saddle to make that climb!).. so this time we crossed the Ochil Hills by heading west towards Forgandenny, and then by taking the turning left up towards Ardargie, and Rossie Ochill, headed over the hills to Glenfarg, and then on the free wheel ride down to Milnarthort (near Loch Leven) reached speeds of up to 50km per hour!
On the way back to Perth we cycled along the northside of Loch Leven towards Scotlandwell, taking an old cycling route through Fife to the village of Strathmiglo, and then crossed back over the Ochill Hills again, before dropping down to Abernethy, and finally alongside the Tay River back to Perth.
One of the best parts of this type of bike ride is that you got to see and experience so many things you would never have done if sat in a motor vehicle!.. apart from the views, or the bonus of not being able to smell petrol or diesel fumes, you actually spend a lot of the time admiring the views while cycling in total silence, maybe occasionally interrupted by the sounds of a bird flying above, or a lamb in a nearby field.. it really is that special 😉
The Ochil Hills just south of Perth are best described as 40 to 50km long ridge running from Stirling all the way east across to Fife, and seen by many as being the dividing line between the Lowlands and the Highlands. So much so that in the past Stirling at one end was described as the main Gateway to the Highlands. The name comes from a Pictish folklore (meaning a ridge rather than a mountain or a range of hills), and although given the name Ochil Hills, this entire ‘ridge’ counts well over a hundred separate peaks standing above 400 meters, with twenty of those peaks running along that ridge standing higher than 600 meters. There is even an Ochils Mountain Rescue Team. And with very few roads, also a natural barrier between North and South.
You can read up more about this part of Scotland at: https://www.visitscotland.com/...
Photos; Loch Leven (banner)… Ochil Hills… another (hidden) loch in Ochil Hills..
More photos can be viewed on our Twitter or Instagram pages, or previous bike rides from this region (from Perth to Loch Leven) are also in the Blog section.
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