Between Trondheim and the sixty-fifth line of latitude, Norway had been comparatively flat. Although my cycling route had taken me along valleys, and beside lakes and fjords, the mountains I was passing were modest in size. There was little to excite your average Munro bagger along the coast of Trondelag and drag him from his bothy, other than the realisation that he had gone to bed in Scotland and woken up on the other side of the North Sea.
That’s a quote from the start of the 30th degree of ‘Spain to Norway on a Bike Called Reggie‘. It was written shortly after returning from my walking holiday last August to Switzerland and the reference to the bothy was probably inspired by meeting fellow Alpine hiker Simon Birch who was part of the walking group. He’s a retired town planner but also chairman of the Mountain Bothies Association or MBA. He spoke engagingly about his work with the group and painted a vivid picture of nights spent in bothies with only an open fire, a friend or two and a bottle of malt whiskey for company. It sounded tempting then and it still sounds tempting thinking about it now.
Alas this morning I didn’t wake up in a Bothy (and have yet to do so) but I have just read an interesting article on the BBC website about Geoff Allan’s new book called The Scottish Bothy Bible. More relevant to this little corner of the world-wide web is that Geoff goes by the name of @bothiesonabike on Twitter and his website is similarly named bothiesonabike.wordpress.com.
Here’s the image in the BBC artcicle that caught my eye:
Doesn’t that just encapsulate everything that’s good about getting out on the bike and escaping the urban world? You can see more pictures of Geoff’s bicycle and even more bothies in the BBC article. The book, produced independently rather than via the MBA, is available online at thescottishbothybible.com. Bothy porn.