As we cycled out of Aviemore, Lois tried to remember where the spa was where she and Helen B. had saunas on our visit here in 1978. Lois was 6 months pregnant with Chris, and Paul’s parents had stayed on in Leamington after Christmas to look after Maritia (Lois recalls that first separation keenly!) Paul remembers drying cross-country ski socks on the radiator in our B&B (that has not changed), while Helen has reminded us that for breakfast, Paul was given two eggs, while Lois and Helen were given one each. (Helen, we are each being served 2 eggs in Scotland now!)
It was a bit warmer today, with no rain, and the sun came out in the early afternoon. We took the busy A95 out of Aviemore and were glad to join the NCN Route#7, alongside the A9 to Moy. The trail went through Carrbridge, with it’s 18th century packhorse bridge.The climb to the Slochd Summit (406m) was steady and along old sections of road and good paths. The road then passed through the small village of Tomatin. There, we visited the Distillery where we sampled a 12 yr old single malt while watching a short video about the making of whisky! Unfortunately, they did not serve Gaelic coffee.
The #7 then took us away from the A9 and along side roads. Just before Culloden, we came across the pre-historic cemetery of Balnuaran of Clava. This consisted of stone “passage graves”, a central ring and surrounding standing stones. It was a quiet and fascinating place.
We then passed the Culloden Battlefields Centre and on into Inverness. Unfortunately, we lost the cycle route and ended up on the with a lot of traffic on the A96. Dinner was good at The Kitchen, overlooking the Ness River and Inverness Castle.