Moving to Inverness….

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  • Moving to Inverness….
  • Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Funny how sometimes life likes to throw you a little surprise.

    There is an extreme likelihood (i.e. virtual certainty) that I will be relocating to Inverness within the next couple of months.

    First priority will be accommodation. Any recommendations for decent rental properties within say 20 miles of the city centre (but preferably within 6 miles so I can walk to work). Where’s the best place to look? Single person but need a spare/guest room. Bike storage (obvs).

    I know the cycling Aviemore way but what’s more local and decent?

    Any decent bike shops?

    Climbing/bouldering?

    General environs/pubs/etc.?

    Any pointers appreciated.

    Spin
    Member

    Bikes of Inverness is probably the best shop. Monster bikes can be good but the service varies hugely depending on who’s behind the counter which is a real shame as the owner is a good bloke.

    Pub wise, it’s only ok, The Castle Tavern is a nice traditional pub, Hootenannys is a bit more lively and the Black Isle Bar is a bit more upmarket.

    The climbing wall is pretty limited but it is cheap if you get a highlife card. There’s decent bouldering at Cummingston which is about 45 mins drive away. Closer, there’s the Ruthven Stone and Tom Riach. Moy rock has excellent sport climbing.

    What makes Inverness great though is the fact that you’re an easy day trip away from places like Torridon.

    There’s a good pump track

    Spin
    Member

    There’s good DH style stuff at Craig Dunain or ‘The Mast’ as locals call it.

    Retromud
    Member

    Culloden woods and over further east in Balloch woods has some ok singletrack for riding from town. Local kids have built quite a few runs with jumps and mini north shore type stuff of varying quality! Good for a couple of hours without too much repetition once you’ve found your way around

    Retromud
    Member

    Golspie is also worth the hour drive further north.
    Would try and stay in inverness if trying to reduce commute time – logistics of getting around from suburbs like culloden are pretty poor.

    Retromud
    Member

    Crown and Kingsmills are generally older traditional properties, so 2 bed more likely flat conversions, lack of parking etc if that is a concern. Couldn’t help area more suburban, more 60’s onwards 2 bed flat/2up 2 downs, semi’s etc, usually with a wee garden, quite common to get a garage, similarly in Scorguie on the far side of town and on the canalside there.
    Westmill and Milton of leys further out of town, OK for biking down to town centre in the morning and a big Hill on the way home!
    Scorguie or Westhill are closest to riding from the door on the relevant sides of the city. Culloden or Balloch I would only go if you struggle elsewhere, just not convenient for getting into town but too suburbia to be like living in the country, traffic is terrible.
    Stay out of Merkinch…

    Spin
    Member

    Culloden woods and over further east in Balloch woods has some ok singletrack for riding from town

    Don’t know when you were last there but those trails were really badly affected by fallen trees when I was out a few months back.

    stevious
    Member

    Inverness is a brilliant place to live.

    Rental property is relatively scarce because house prices are low enough for lots of folk to buy. It’s a small city so wherever you are you’ll be able to cycle in.

    I lived right next to Craig phadraig – get a local to show you around there and the mast. Golspie, laggan, fort William, Torridon and aviemore are all 90mins or less away.

    The wall at the leisure centre is excellent for its size. The mad-eyed ginger guy called Rob who spends much of his time in the bouldering area will keep you right on local crags.

    So jealous

    trail_rat
    Member

    Neill I’m jealous. I’d love to live in or near Inverness !

    Premier Icon bigjim
    Subscriber

    Lucky you! Been twenty years since I left but love visiting the family up there. Hope to return one day.

    There’s ridiculous amounts of biking near and far including the amazing pump track . Some Facebook groups, Highland trail riders is one perhaps? I got some good tips from chatting to friendly random riders when I was last up, there’s quite a good scene up there now with people building lots of trails. Monster bikes is probably a good place to ask at least about the mast trails, you can pay a little to get a year pass or something. I’ve never ridden them but they look pretty mental.

    My biggest tip would be don’t just go to trail centres, there’s amazing singletrack hidden away all over the place, just needs to be found. A car would be an essential for me.

    Not sure what the night spots are these days, very out of touch. Gunnies, chilis and g’s probably don’t exist any more…

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Subscriber

    20 miles would get you to Contin/Strathpeffer area with all the trails around there. Not far from Evanton either.

    I can’t imagine there’s much to rent though and I’m not sure I’d fancy the commute every day. At least when I was doing it I was going against the flow of traffic.

    A workmate lives on the Black Isle and commutes by bike.

    Where would you be based- across the river from us?

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    It all depends on what is available as that will dictate where any choice is between.

    I’ll be based in Central Inverness but suspect there’ll be a fair bit of travelling involved.

    I should state that I’m not completely ignorant of Inverness but mainly my visits have been transitory. Mostly as a final refuelling stop before heading to the NW climbing or on the motorbike. Other than a night in the YH at the end of a 500 mile cycle tour over twenty years ago I don’t I’ve ever stayed there overnight. To close Aberdeen I guess.

    I wonder if I still have my life membership for the climbing wall (we used to nip up now and again when Aberdeen was devoid of any decent facility)…. Forgot about Moy, quite nice, if you can overlook the manufactured holds!

    Yeah, raced Contin BITD, always a good spot. There was Dores come to think of it. And, yeah, Goslpie, only been once.

    Not in a position to buy at present, hopefully this will change within a year though.

    Black Isle would be an acceptable location though πŸ™‚

    kormoran
    Member

    Inverness is ace, I have lived there 12 years and love it.

    Renting is relatively expensive in the town (where isn’t?) and to be honest a lot of the housing stock is pretty uninspiring. I’d probably start by looking on the HSPC website and go from there. Worth pointing out it doesn’t have all estate agents/solicitors on there so it isn’t the sum total of housing available. I’d maybe ask about at the Velocity cafe and bike workshop in town, lots of cycle mad folk there and the chance to find a rental or room through it probably good.

    Not much else to add to what’s been said already – I’d recommend the Clachnaharry Inn, lots of good trad ales and possibly closest to what a typical pub should be like. Ok food too.

    Premier Icon Capt. Kronos
    Subscriber

    I always wanted to move to Inverness – that was my next planned location after Stirling. Unfortunately something went terribly wrong and I am now in the Lake District!

    Really quite envious.

    Enjoy πŸ™‚

    Retromud
    Member

    [/quote]
    Spin – Member
    Culloden woods and over further east in Balloch woods has some ok singletrack for riding from town
    Don’t know when you were last there but those trails were really badly affected by fallen trees when I was out a few months back

    It’s probably a year since I rode there tbf – based up in alness now so not my local riding anymore

    Retromud
    Member

    I think most of my rental finds were via hspc or Gumtree ads, there are a couple more letting agents around but some of them don’t keep websites particularly up to date so a good bit of chasing potential property was involved.

    Premier Icon chrissyharding
    Subscriber

    Cheapest places to rent are the less affluent areas.
    of which none a very bad.
    Dalneigh where I live, fine. Merkinch good houses slightly less desirable. Hilston the least desirable. By No means are they no go areas.
    I come from Norris Green Liverpool.
    Some people who have an negative opinion on an area, mostly haven’t lived there.
    Close your front door. Doesn’t matter where you live.
    I really like Inverness, fine people. don’t bevvy. Only eat out in one cafe (strict dietary requirements + vegan).
    15 mins from wilderness.

    Spin
    Member

    Hilston the least desirable. By No means are they no go areas.

    It’s all relative, I teach in Inverness and the kids are convinced Hilton is like Beirut!

    Premier Icon bigjim
    Subscriber

    I grew up on the black Isle and used to ride to work in Inverness over the Kessock bridge, it’s pretty quick and a nice ride but can be a bit mental in a gale. I’m not sure there would be many rental properties but north Kessock would be worth considering.

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    So, what’s the mountain biking like on the Black Isle? Looking like I’ll be headed that way in early May…

    Premier Icon speedstar
    Subscriber

    Learnie is the only proper mtb centre on the actual black isle. It’s great but quite short so I get a bit bored these days although the rock ladders are quite challenging on the black! Golspie, Laggan, Torridon are all within an easy drive though so you are quite spoilt in many ways!

    murf
    Member

    There are also trails at Abriachan, just down the A82. I stay in Drumnadrochit, 12 miles south. It’s a great wee place to live and we’ve got a decent network of natural trails built πŸ™‚
    Feel free to pop down for a visit, always happy to show people around.

    Premier Icon nstpaul
    Subscriber

    Not much on the North side of the Black Isle itself where I stay unless you like fire roads. There are pockets of woodland that have some converted deer tracks but take a bit of local knowledge to find.Better off on the south side where you have easier access to Learnie and all the off piste stuff there and further along at Eathie. I think there is also some stuff around Ord Hill by North Kessock and possibly some at Drumderfit Hill overlooking Munlochy Bay.Basically anywhere with a hill, forest and reasonable access will have something hidden away.

    On the plus side, as long as you have access to transport you are never further away than about half an hours drive from loads of stuff mentioned in previous posts (and more) and an hour or so from proper epic riding.

    If you do move up here then the folk on the Highland Trail Riders closed Facebook group will be a great place to start and seem to be a very friendly lot.

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Subscriber

    although the rock ladders are quite challenging on the black!

    Yep, challenging trails. Last time I was there it was still under development but we bumped into Tim Meek, the trail designer, and got a private tour. Needless to say, he made it all look very easy….

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Thanks for responses.

    Nstpaul: take it you’re talking about Millbuie? Pity think I’ll be south side of that. Guess I’ll need to check out Ord Hill & Drumderfit. I prefer ‘natural’ trails, not that keen on riding black rock ladders (can’t afford to get injured at my age!) but I’ll no doubt take a dander to Learnie at some point.

    And I’ll try that FB page too…

    Premier Icon nstpaul
    Subscriber

    Hi Metalheart,
    I’m further along near Culbokie but lived in Mulbuie for years.Let me know where you are you going to be based and I’ll give you some pointers as to where’s good πŸ™‚

    If you don’t have access to transport apart from cycling and you are working in town then if not too late probably best to live around the Scorguie end of Inverness if you want to maximise your riding opportunities (apart from the hill on the way home everyday ;)) imo.

    Also over my way the Ben Wyvis Cycle Club (BWCC) has a Facebook page and a website,a bit more ‘serious’ than HTR group but also do a lot of group activities of all types.

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Well, job accepted, notices have been served, house found and the movers have been booked… This is happening.

    What time does the roundabout south of the Kessock get borked in the am (i.e. what time do I need to be clear of it for?

    I’ll PM you later on nstpaul πŸ˜€

    I have transport and I will be fulfilling BAM ’17 obligations as well.

    Just a couple of weeks to go now…

    Premier Icon bedmaker
    Subscriber

    I wouldn’t worry too much about the roundabout metalheart, I once timed myself over it when it was backed up away past N KEssock. 13 mins it took to get past.
    I don’t hit it in the morning often but it just seems to be from 8.30 until 8.55 or so that it’s properly slow. Heading north in the afternoon on a Friday is probably worse. It’s hardly the M8 though.

    Give us a shout once you are up and settled. A group of us regularly ride Fyrish /Novar.
    You’ll need a look around as soon as so that you can help us with SSEC17 of course πŸ™‚ We’ll need plenty marshals/hecklers.

    Plenty of good riding groups around here, always someone to ride with.
    I’m hoping to get plenty of bigger days out over the summer too. Torridon, Macdui, North West etc. I’m self employed so tend to take off at short notice if the forecast is good.

    Premier Icon bigjim
    Subscriber

    I basically spent most of my teenage years biking on ord hill, there’s loads of steep rooty rocky little tracks and there are now some bike specific tracks being cut in. The terrain is fantastic for biking but you need to get the trail centre concept out of your head and piece it all together yourself. Learnie is quite good fun and there’s some good off piste. There’s some other hidden gems on the black Isle but I’ll never tell as if they end up on strava they’ll be ruined. It’s always worth exploring woodlands anyway.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    IME Inverness traffic is not too slow in morning, unless past 8.30.
    It’s the evening that really fouls up…
    I like Inverness, and the amazing wild places within a few miles.
    That said, I’ve only ever visited for work, not lived there. I’m

    Premier Icon duncancallum
    Subscriber

    I am jealous, id move tomorrow!

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    That sounds okay then (as long as before 8.30) as hoping to be able to start at 8 at the latest).

    Must admit, having seen that Friday pm traffic I was worried that was normal!

    Definitely looking forwards to the move πŸ˜€

    Premier Icon Sandwich
    Subscriber

    Not jealous, no not at all…

    Premier Icon danti
    Subscriber

    Same here, not jealous, hoping to retire up there :-). Long way off mind…

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Locals are friendly. Joined the HTR FB page as directed (thanks Paul).

    Forestry guy offered to give me pointers for Contin. Turned up this morning and a guy on a Switchback stopped to chat as my Sherpa was holding the car up. Turns out he’s one of the HTR admins. He then introduced me to another guy who had just pulled up in the car park who then offered to guide me round the old XC and some other stuff… Course it was pish coz it’s all dry and everything…. πŸ˜‰

    Thanks guys!

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