Seasoned cycle enthusiast Mike L was at the helm for this month’s ride which left from our usual start point at Peter’s Yard in Middle Meadow Walk. We headed up over Brunstfield Links to Merchiston, turning right at the foot of Spylaw Road, over the canal at Ashley Terrace and right into Harrison Gardens, then down Ardmillan Terrace to Murieston. From here we took the still blocked (but not to cyclists) Russell Road to the zig-zags up onto the Roseburn Path where our leader suffered a minor mechanical mishap when his chain overshot and got stuck between the cassette and the rear wheel. Having successfully dislodged and re-set the chain, we set off in the direction of Ravelston, leaving the path at the Sustrans marker in Craigleith, and making our way over to Ravelston Wood at the entrance in Queensferry Road. This brought us up into the grounds of Mary Erskine School and thence to Ravelston Dykes, along which we rode to the National Gallery of Modern Art for a spot of culture and a combined comfort stop. Thereafter we crossed over Belford Road and made our way (on foot) through the Dean Cemetery to the Dean Village, and down the Water of Leith to our lunch stop in Stockbridge.
Being Sunday, Stockbridge’s local market was in full swing and provided a ready-made food outlet for some of our riders, whilst another group of hardy individuals braved the unseasonal chill to eat a picnic lunch on the benches on Hamilton Place, in earshot of the Water of Leith.
For the second leg we crossed the road at the junction of Deanhaugh and Raeburn Place, and followed the WoL along Bernard Row and Arboretum Avenue to the small path along the side of the cricket ground, emerging at Inverleith Pond and the path leading up to the Park. Here we made our way across the Park to Inverleith Place, across Inverleith Row to Warriston Gardens and on to the Goldenacre path which took us to the newly landscaped five ways junction. Turning left we followed the path all the way back to Roseburn, where we eschewed the previously troublesome zig-zags and headed over to Haymarket following the path alongside the railway line. At Haymarket we turned into Dalry Road, carefully avoiding the tram lines by using the pedestrian crossing, then took an immediate left into Dalry Place, along Caledonian Crescent to the crossing at the Western Approach Road. Here we tackled another set of zig-zags at the foot of Grove Place, rode on to Fountainbridge and up Gilmore Park to the lift bridge over the canal at Leamington Road.
Thereafter it was a brisk ride along Gilmore Place to the junction at Home Street, followed by a left turn into Valleyfield Street, which took us back to the Meadows and our start point in MMW where a few of us gathered for a well-earned end-of-ride cup of coffee.
Another great day’s cycling with thanks to Mike L for leading, Jim C for being back marker – oh, and Fiona H for the lovely cake. And, of course, this excellent report by Michael (not Mike) L.