Singletrack Magazine Issue 115: The Merrick

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Words & Photography David ‘Sanny’ Gould

Sanny heads to the deep south west of Scotland and steps back into its bloody past.

As part of the ominously named ‘Range of the Awful Hand’ (almost as unappealing as Peak of the Fungal Athlete’s Foot), the Merrick stands some 2,766ft tall, which makes it a Corbett and no, there are no four candles nor ’oes involved. It isn’t a peak that you happen upon by accident. There is no turning of the corner on a highland road that brings a big reveal like the Buachaille. You have to make the effort to seek it out. Despite its relatively gentle slopes, it is no benign presence and many a walker or mountain biker has been caught out by the peculiar microclimate of this imposing peak in an area defined by its history of glaciation and guerrilla warfare.

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David Gould

Singletrack Contributor

By day, Sanny plies his trade as a Chartered Accountant and Non-Executive Director. By night, however, give him a map and the merest whisper of a trail "that might go" and he'll be off faster than a rat up a drainpipe on some damn fool mission to discover new places to ride. Rarely without his trusty Nikon D5600, he likes nothing better than being in the big mountains, an inappropriately heavy bike on his back, taking pics and soaking up the scenery. He also likes to ride his bike there too although rumours that he is currently working on his next book, "Walks with my bike", are untrue (mostly).

Fat biking, gravel riding, bikepacking, road biking, e biking, big mountain adventures - as long as two wheels are involved, you'll find him with a grin on his face as he dives off the side of a mountain, down a narrow lane or into deep undergrowth in search of hidden trails and new adventures.

His favourite food is ham and mushroom pizza and he is on a mission to ride all of the Munros, mostly as it allows him to indulge in eating more pizza.

He has no five year plan, is a big fan of the writing of Charlie Connelly and reckons that Kermode and Mayo's Film Review Podcast is quite possibly the finest bit of broadcasting around.

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