Jimmy's Galloway Gallop

Galloway Gallop Adventure Cross

21 September 2014

The ever intrepid Jimmy Grant headed off to Dumfries & Galloway on a Cross Adventure taking in 68 miles of mixed terrain, tricky climbs & heart-in-mouth descents. Here's What he had to say about it all.

Galloway Gallop Adventure Cross 21st September: While a sizeable Ronde contingent was flying the flag/getting pished at the Bute Festival of Cycling, I did my bit at this event farther south in Dumfries and Galloway. Two route options were available: the Mini Massif at 42 miles and the Massif at 68.

Jimmy going strong

I went for the latter and at times that day I wished I’d gone for the shorter route - it felt harder than some 100 mile road sportives I’ve done. Starting at Kirroughtree mountain bike trail centre, the route consisted of 39 miles off road and 29 miles on road. It certainly had plenty of variety: dirt/gravel forest roads; lots of climbs including some some big ones where I was cursing the lack of a lower gear(s); several rocky descents making me (briefly) envious of those riding mountain bikes with suspension; and a boggy, flooded section where it was a struggle to keep the pedals turning.

Fortunately, there was enough tarmac to ease the pain, pick up the pace and leave the mountain bikers behind! As for the weather, it was perfect - no wind to speak of, sunshine throughout but not too warm. I completed the course in 5h 6m 52s, placing me 8th from 50 finishers. Not too bad for an auld yin and now the pain has subsided I’m considering, work commitments permitting, going for the next event in the Lake District on 12th October (Lakeland Monster Miles Adventure X). Anyone else interested?

Happier on solid tarmac

Words and photos by Jimmy Grant