An early rise for the brave or the stupid awaited the Velo who put up their hands for the annual 5 Ferries cycle. With another volatile weather week, as usual all eyes were on BBC weather up until Friday evening.
Eager to make the most of the day Andy T and I met in Paisley at 6.45 to cycle down to Wemyss Bay. Heavy fog passing the airport made us a bit sceptical of what mother nature had in store.
Tailwind at our backs we spun down to see who else had avoided the 'col de aff'. Rumour has it some members had pre-5 ferries 5 pints on the Friday night.
Sure enough Don, Gavin, Mark S, Derek, Dave Barr and Geoff were waiting tickets in hand as the weather began to look like a belter and sure enough swarms of cycling groups began to turn up. The promise of a good days weather was too good to pass up.
It must have been obvious that it was my maiden 5 ferries as when I asked the shop keeper how long was the ferry he promptly replied 'about 65 metres'. Well at least he roasted me in metric terms I thought.
Dave decided to do his own thing cycling around the Isle of Bute as his back heals. The rest of us we were off.
The Kyles of Bute viewpoint climb was the first of three nice climbs throughout the route where Don and Andy showed continued great form despite Andys recent brief venture into camping.
Don cohersed us to have a brief shop stop at Tarbert to refuel and try and make a 13.10 ferry at Claonaig which turned out only to be a figment of his imagination. The wait for the 13.50 Ferry was welcomed and laughs were a plenty.
After a quick stop at Lochranza for coke and ice cream we were set to take on the last climb of the day. Our tiring legs eventually got up it and after a quick regroup we decided to put the hammer down into Brodrick (for fear they would be out of fish).
Fish and Chips suppers in Brodrick and an ice cold beverage on the Ferry to Ardrosson capped off a great day on the bike with the Velo.
The 5 Ferries comes highly recommended and with great reason. One to watch out for.