If its been peeing down is it a bit of a wasted journey? How much boardwalk is there and is it effected by the rain at all? Theres been a reticence to go in the past when the weather has been poor.
Fort WIlliam Red.
It'll be alright in the wet, but proper miserable as its exposed and quite high up.
There's A LOT of boardwalk, but its all chicken wired so won't be slippy.
There's a lot of bedrock, which will be slippy.
There's a lot of committing sections, which if you decide is too slippy and nail the brakes you'll proper hurt yourself.
I'd say its the second or first hardest BLACK in the UK grade wise. Its not a red, I find the black at Laggan easier tbh. so.... If youre not happy on all of Kirroughtree mcMoab or Laggan black, riding it in the wet may be a bit too much.
Personally, its one to save for a dry, sunny and low wind day. Very much so, check the wind anything about 20mph will make riding it a PITA.
(Its a great trail, but £30 each for a day ticket, so worth saving for a good day).
Do others agree that it's that hard? As a pretty average rider I rode it a couple of times last week (my first uplift at Aonach Mor) on my BFe and while I wasn't that quick I didn't think (other than a couple of corners in the rock section that I had to step off on and walk back up to re-ride) it was stupidly tough (have ridden Laggan Reds but not the Black and still daren't attempt Airs Rock). The paint marks DO help a huge amount though.
First time I've ever seen braking bumps on boardwalk/chicken wire though.
It was dry when I was there, but I imagine if it's wet you would be OK on everything except the steepest rock sections and the short peaty bit 2/3 of the way down.
It's not That difficult, and "committing sections" where you have to bail out aren't that at all ?
I've done it in the Dry, wet, wind, not so dry and not too wet, it makes no difference ? If you have to get off and walk sections then your going to have that optimism, just try and keep your tyres on the wooden stuff if it's breezy as its pretty easy to get some daylight under the tyres on some sections and the wind quickly grabs you.
YK when are you thinking of doing it ?
It's not as hard as Rickon makes it out to be, but it's definitely in the same ballpark as the other Scottish trail centre blacks. The beauty of it is you can ride it several times in the same day, so as long as you take it nice and easy the first time down you should be fine.
I'd agree that it's more affected by wind than rain as the boardwalk and bedrock are less slippery than you'd expect, and the exposed nature helps it dry quite quickly. If it was hosing it down I'd give it a miss though.
The XC trails there are fairly all-weather though. I managed a ride there almost every week when I lived in FW.
I'd say there is much less margin for error in the wet. If you commit it'll be fine, there is adequate grip, but if you need to brake or brake at the wrong time when it is wet then are far more likely to come off. I've not done much else in Scotland but it is way harder and more intimidating than welsh blacks. A few people went off the edge when I was there.
A group of us went last year and the weather turned really cack. The riding was still great fun - despite the wind and rain. Grip was not too bad at all and like most times you ride in the rain, the worst bit is getting out of the car or tent. Once you're going, it doesn't make too much difference.
In those conditions, the great cafe makes a huge difference. A couple of runs then warm up and dry off with a huge bacon butty and a coffee - genius!
The boardwalk is ok in the wet.
The rock isn't too bad either, but as others have pointed out, being up there won't be pleasant if it's really wet/windy.
It's not technically that hard, it's possible to mince all of it, but...if you ride it quickly it becomes a slightly different beast.
A bit of rain is actually good up there, particularly on the DH. Some of the corners have been lethal recently.
The rock is similar to that of kirro, ie it doesn't seem to lose any grip in the wet. Echo the sentiments above re wind, wind more of a factor than the wet.
Cheers all, I had hoped to go soon but I may hold off till we get a dry spell, plenty other trails to ride in the inclement weather.
YK! Answer yer phone!
I shall charge it the noo...if I can find it
YoKaiser has a phone?! I heard he lost it in a Grappafest!
Hmmm Grappa, don't mind if I do
I just found out - the last day's uplift is the 15th September (or seems to be from the website) so not many more chances to get over there.
Basically, its the best purpose made xc trail I've ridden, up a mountain, long descent, very little pedalling, with lots of proper little challenges to manage without interrupting the flow. Roll down slowly and stop too look at stuff on your first run. by your fourth run you'll get cocky and crash off!
the granite is grippy when wet but if the weather is poor it's horrible up there so head for the pub.
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