Ever wanted to ride an 11 year-old singlespeed for 550 miles across the Scottish Highlands? No, me either. But old friend of Spoke, Markus 'Magnus' Stitz is one crazy ex-Wellingtonian German who did just that recently at the Highland Trail 550, punching out 100 miles on the last day alone. Mental.
The Highland Trail is a long distance self-supported mountain bike time-trail route through the Scottish Highlands. For 2014 the distance is increased from 430 miles to 560 miles with the addition of a loop further north into Assynt. There is no entry fee, no prize money, and definitely no support. It is a self-timed Individual Time Trial (ITT). All that is provided is inspiration, a suggested start time, a GPS track file, and a list of completion times.
Riders are limited to 40 for the suggested start time. You may experience Scotland's beautiful sunny blue skies and cool mountain streams and lochs as far as you can see! But, be warned, the weather in Scotland can change on a whim, and you may be just as likely find yourself getting besieged by cold lashing rain and high winds. In short, don't attempt this ride unprepared - no one will be there to rescue you! Approach the ride as though you are on an independent expedition, fully prepared for your own limitations and whatever nature has in store for you.