January 2017

Monday 2nd – A New Year Special, out through Cousland to Humbie, Gifford, across to Haddington, over the Yak, and back via Garleton and Port Seton. 41 miles.

Sunday 8th – A huge turnout (28) for the first combined fitness/intermediate ride of the year.  Everyone started together through Musselburgh; the fitness ride headed west via Crichton, Middleton and Rosebery reservoir to the Scots Pine cafe, back by Leadburn and Bonnyrigg (52 miles).  The intermediate ride headed east to Pencaitland then via the Saltouns to Humbie for coffee and home via Cousland (35 miles).


New Year resolutions in evidence – a big turnout for January.

Sunday 15th – Another huge turnout (30). The whole group rode through Inveresk and up the Smeaton Farm road. The fitness ride went through Dalkeith, Roslin and Auchendinny to Carlops and over to Whitmuir for coffee, then back through Leadburn, Rosslynlee and Sheriffhall (49 miles). The intermediate ride went to Humbie, across to Gifford for coffee, and back via Tranent (38 miles).

Sunday 22nd – Big numbers again (32) for a ride out to the Tyninghame cafe. Starting along the coast, the intermediate ride went past Aberlady, then via Kingston and E Linton and returned via Huntington, Gladsmuir and Tranent (47 miles).  The fitness ride got there via Samuelston, Moreham and Stenton, and returned via Athelstaneford and Prestonpans (53 miles).

Sunday 29th – The whole group rode together to Dalkeith, from where the fitness ride headed towards the Granites, but because of icy roads looped east instead, through Gorebridge and Pencaitland to Gifford, where we met the intermediate ride, which had got there via Edgehead and Pathhead. The return route was through Haddington, with the fitness ride going via Aberlady, and the intermediate ride via Huntington and Longniddry, then all back along the coast road (50/41 miles).

February 2017

Sunday 5th – We started along the coast, separating after Port Seton. The fitness ride (plagued by punctures) went through Coates and Huntington to Haddington, cross-country to Garvald, then via Longyester and Stobshiel to Humbie for coffee; then direct home via Peaston and Carberry.  The intermediate ride went to Aberlady then Haddington, coffee at Gifford, back via East and West Saltoun and Cousland (38 miles).

Sunday 12th – A much smaller group gathered on a cold and windy day for a ride through Pencaitland, Gifford and Stenton to Tyninghame for coffee, then back by Markle and Longniddry (46 miles).

Sunday 19th – Both groups rode through Inveresk and up Carberry hill. The fitness ride went through Edgehead and Borthwick to the Granites, then via Heriot to the Soutra road; after coffee, the return route was via Humbie and Cousland (55 miles).  The intermediate ride went more directly to Soutra via Pathhead and Cousland, on to Humbie for coffee and home via Ormiston and Tranent (44 miles).

Sunday 26th – The fitness ride went past Carrington to Howgate and on to Whitmuir for coffee, then fast home over the moor road to Penicuik, Harper’s Brae, Rosslynlee, Polton Bank and the Drum estate; windy, and wet at the end (46  miles).

March 2017

Sunday 5th – The fitness ride went up the Granites and down to Innerleithen for coffee, then back along the A7 coach road (68 miles).  The intermediate ride went along the coast road to Aberlady, inland via Kingston to N Berwick, then over the hill to E Linton; after coffee at Smeaton Farm, the ride took the Hales Castle road to Haddington and home via Elvingston and Prestonpans (52 miles).

Sunday 12th – Both rides went through Tranent, and Pencaitland, then up Redstone Rig, across the moor towards Whiteadder then back down the steep descent to Garvald and along to Gifford for coffee.  The fitness ride had a couple of punctures and took a longer route on the way out, via Longyester, but everyone got to the top of the Rig at around the same time, and the two groups also overlapped at the Lanterne Rouge. The route home was via the Saltouns and Tranent for the intermediate ride and via Samuelston and Longniddry for the fitness ride (48/53 miles).


Fitness and intermediate groups together on Redstone Rig, March 2017

Sunday 19th – The fitness ride went to Broughton in the wind and rain via Dalkeith Country Park, Carrington, the Meldons, Stobo and Dreva, but found the cafe closed, so went on to Whitmuir; the return in sunshine was via Blyth Bridge, Leadburn and Bonnyrigg (65 miles).  The intermediate ride went to Humbie for coffee via Tranent, Pencaitland, East Saltoun; back by Blegbie, Fala, Salters road, West Saltoun, Pencaitland and Tranent (46 miles).

Sunday 26th – On a sunny, cold, day everyone started off going up Carberry to Cousland. The fitness ride went down to Stow via Fala Dam, Soutra, Lauder and Threepwood; back on the Old Coach Road and the Granites (65 miles).  The intermediate ride went via Edgehead, Pathhead, over the A68 and via Tynehead to the A7, south to Heriot, then over the hill to the House of Soutra, then back by Fala, the ford road, Pencaitland and Tranent (46 miles).


Intermediate riders admire the view from the top of Soutra, March 2017

April 2017

Sunday 2nd – Beautiful spring sunshine for both rides. The intermediate ride went east through Tranent, Haddington and Traprain to Tynninghame for coffee, back by Drem, Aberlady and the coast (48 miles).  The fitness ride went west, through Morningside and Colinton to Balerno, down the Lang Whang, a little loop by Weston and Elsrickle to the Big Red Barn for coffee, then back by Blyth Bridge, Leadburn and Bonnyrigg (67 miles).

Thursday 6th – the first evening ride of 2017 did a loop from Carberry to Pencaitland, through the Saltouns and Haddington to East Fortune, and back via Drem (40 miles).

Sunday 9th – The intermediate ride started up Carberry, then went via Borthwick and Middleton to the Granites, down to Heriot, over to Soutra for coffee, then home via Humbie and Cousland (50 miles).  The fitness ride started a similar way, but carried on to Innerleithen for coffee, and back up the “old coach road” parallel to the A7 (70 miles).

Thursday 13th – A small turnout for an evening loop through Longniddry to Pencaitland, back by Cousland (30 miles).

Sunday 16th – The fitness ride skirted round the city to Currie, then looped through Kirknewton, Pumpherston and Torphichen (in heavy drizzle) to the Bridge 49 cafe on the Union Canal, before riding home via Linlithgow, Philipstoun, Queensferry and the Dalmeny Estate (62 miles).  The intermediate ride went to Whitmuir for coffee, via Carrington, Temple and Gladhouse, then back via the moor road and Penicuik (51 miles).

Thursday 20th – a well attended evening ride up Carberry, through Crichton, Tynehead, Temple and Mount Lothian and home via the A7 and Sheriffhall. 38 miles.

Saturday 22nd – a family feeder ride to Pedal on Parliament via the Brunstane Burn path and the Innocent Railway, then with thousands of other from the Meadows along George IV Bridge and down the Royal Mile to the Scottish Parliament (7 miles).


The Portovelo contingent, young and old(er), at Holyrood – Pedal on Parliament 2017

Sunday 23rd – the fitness ride went to Dawyck via Sheriffhall, Carrington, the Meldons, and Stobo; back by Broughton, Rommanobridge, the moor road to Penicuik, Roslin and the Wisp (69 miles).  The intermediate ride went west through Granton and Cramond to S Queensferry, then through Newton to Linlithgow for coffee and back through Winchburgh, Kirkliston, and then a mix of cycle-paths and roads back through Edinburgh (48 miles).

Thursday 27th – the evening ride headed east via Elphinstone, Pencaitland and Begbie to Morham, then over the Big Yak to Aberlady and home via the coast road. 42 miles.

Sunday 30th – the fitness ride went into the wind through Tranent and Gifford to Stenton, then from Spott up Crystal Rig to Whiteadder, down Redstone Rig to the Gifford cafe and home by Bolton Wood, Samuelston, Gladsmuir and St Germain (66 miles). The intermediate ride also went to the Gifford cafe, via Tranent and Samuelston, back via Longyester, Stobshiel, Begbie, Fala and Cousland (46 miles).

May 2017

Thursday 4th – an evening ride to Longyester via Carberry and Humbie and back via Gifford and Tranent – 40 miles

Sunday 7th – the intermediate ride went through Longniddry, Samuelston and Garvald, up Redstone Rig and down to Gifford for coffee; back via East Saltoun, Pencaitland, Elphinstone and Carberry (52 miles).  The fitness ride went to the Strawberry Barn near Dunbar via Carberry, East Saltoun, Gifford and Stenton; back through the Biel Estate, past Traprain Law to Haddington, Samuelston, Longniddry and (fast) along the coast road (69 miles).


Gordon leading the intermediate group in East Lothian, May 2017

Thursday 11th – an evening ride to Traprain Law, taking in Fa’side hill and Samuelston on the way out, wind assisted home through Morham and Bolton (45 miles).

Sunday 14th – the fitness ride went to Peebles via Carrington, the Meldons and Manor Sware, along the south side of the Tweed past Traquair to Innerleithen for coffee, and home over the Granites and fast up the A7 (68 miles). The intermediate ride went round the top of the Pentlands via Roslin, to Harlaw for coffee then via Threipmuir to the A70 and home (53 miles).

Thursday 18th – an evening ride up Carberry, through the Saltouns to Gifford and back through Haddington and along the coast (41 miles).

Sunday 21st – the fitness group did a loop on new roads south of Lauder (where we stopped for coffee), getting there via Fala, the A68 and Carfrae, back by Oxton, the A68, Humbie and Cousland (64 miles); the intermediate ride went to N Berwick via Longniddry, Haddington,  Hailes Castle (for culture stop) and East Linton, back via Kingston, Luffness, Aberlady and coast road with tea-stop at Prestongrange Mining Museum (50 miles).

Thursday 25th – evening ride to Humbie, over Soutra to the A7 (where two peeled off to do the Granites), home via Tynehead, Crichton and Mayfield (43 miles).

Sunday 28th – the intermediate ride went via Longniddry and Aberlady to North Berwick, past Tantallon Castle to Tyninghame for coffee, then back via Athelstaneford and Haddington (56 miles).  The fitness ride went to Linlithgow via West Calder, Blackburn, Bathgate and Beecraigs and retuned past the Binns, through S Queensferry and along Ferry Road (63 miles).

June 2017

Thursday 1st – an evening ride through Dalkeith and up to Mount Lothian, past Gladhouse and home through Borthwick, Crichton and Cousland (43 miles).

Sunday 4th – the fitness ride went to Lauder from Stow the longer and harder way, then back (after coffee) the shorter, easier way, the rest of the route there and back was from Pathhead via Crichton to the A7, then the coach road from Heriot to Stow (62 miles).  The intermediate group went to Whitmuir via Temple and Gladhouse reservoir, returning over the moor road with a tail wind (50 miles).


The fitness group at Crichton en route to Lauder, June 2017

Thursday 8th – on a wet election day, a poorly attended evening ride via Newtongrange and Rosebury Resevoir to Tynehead, back via the ford road and Ormiston (42 miles).

Sunday 11th – the fitness ride went out through Craigmillar, Loanhead, Roslin and Auchendinny to Leadburn, then via the Lyne Valley and Skirling to the Big Red Barn, back by Blyth Bridge, W Linton and Bonnyrigg (70 miles).  The intermediate group went via Crichton, Borthwick and the Granites to Heriot then over Soutra to the House of Soutra cafe, back via Carrington and Eskbank (55 miles).


The fitness ride at the Big Red Barn, June 2017

Thursday 15th – an evening ride up Carberry, via Pathhead and Crichton to the A7, over Soutra and back by the Humbie road (44 miles).

Friday 16th to Sunday 18th – the 5th Portovelo weekender began with nearly half the group riding from Edinburgh to the ferry terminal at Ardrossan via Carnwath and E Kilbride, while the rest travelled by car; from Brodick, we all rode round the NE coast of Arran through Corrie and Sannox then over a big hill to Lochranza (14 miles). On Saturday, we took the ferry to Claonaig, rode down the lumpy east coast of Kintyre to Campbeltown; after lunch, we took minor roads past Machrahanish airport and Tangy, before joining the A83 up the west coast past Gigha to Kennacraig, then back over the hill to the ferry (67 miles).  On Sunday we re-traced Friday’s route to Brodick bay, climbed over the String Road to the west coast, then anti-clockwise back to the ferry with a cafe stop in Lagg (45 miles).

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Sunday 18th – a combined fitness/intermediate ride went via Carrington, Temple and Eddleston, over the Meldons to West Linton for the cafe stop, then back over the moor to Penicuik, Roslin, the Drum estate and Danderhall (58 miles).

Thursday 22nd – a fastish evening ride up to Gladhouse reservoir and back (35 miles).

Sunday 25th – the fitness ride went to Linlithgow via Cramond, Dalmeny Estate, Winchburgh, West Binnie and Beecraigs, home past the golf course above Bo’ness, past the Binns, Dalmeny and Cramond again (58 miles).  The intermediate group went to Gifford via Pencaitland, East Saltoun, Blegbie and Humbie, back through Moreham, Samuelston and Cousland (55 miles).

July 2017

Sunday 2nd – the fitness ride started on the cycle path from Leith to Kirkliston, went via Kingscavil to Linlithgow, past Beecraigs to Cairnpapple, Bathgate, over to the Bridge 49 cafe on the canal, and home via Linlithgow, Kingscavil and Kirkliston again (65 miles). The intermediate group went up Carberry, past Borthwick castle to Gladhouse and Roseberry reservoirs, then back through Tynehead and Fala to Humbie for coffee, and home via Tranent (53 miles).

Thursday 6th – an evening ride through Newbattle, Gorebridge and Middleton to the Granites and back (43 miles) – route: https://www.strava.com/activities/1071016382

Sunday 9th – the fitness ride went to Peebles via Inveresk, Dalkeith, Newbattle, Carrington and Gladhouse, then via Blyth Bridge, Dolphinton and W Linton to Whitmuir for coffee, home by Leadburn and Bonnyrigg.  The intermediate group headed up to Tranent, Haddington, past Traprain Law, towards Stenton, through Garvald to Gifford and the Lantern Rouge for coffee; back via the Saltouns, Ormiston, Cousland and Inveresk (57 miles).

Thursday 13th – an evening ride along the coast to Aberlady, inland to Haddington, via Samuelston to the Humbie road, then (in the rain) home by Carberry (38 miles).

Sunday 16th – the fitness group rode down to Innerleithen via Carberry, Gorebridge and the Granites and back via the Thorneylee climb, along the Old Coach road and home via Tynehead, Pathhhead and Cousland (69 miles).  The intermediate group started out the same way, turned off for Heriot, then over the Soutra road to the cafe on the A68 and home via Humbie (50 miles).

Thursday 20th – an evening ride to Aberlady, inland to Garleton, Bangly Brae, over the level crossing and back along the coast road (28 miles).

Sunday 23rd – on a very wet day, the fitness group went up the Rig, getting there via the River Esk path, Smeaton Farm, Ormiston and the Saltouns, then descended to Garvald and went to E Linton (Smeaton nursery) for the cafe stop, and finally home through Drem and Longniddry (64 miles). The intermediate group went to Gifford, Dunbar, had coffee at Tyninghame and came back along the coast road via North Berwick.

Thursday 27th – a wet evening ride through Dalkeith, Newbattle and Temple to Gladhouse, back by Leadburn and Bonnyrigg (40 miles).

Sunday 30th – the intermediate group went along the coast road to N Berwick, past Tantallon to Tyninghame for coffee, home by E Linton, Athelstaneford and Tranent (52 miles).  The fitness group went to Dunbar via Garvald, stopped for coffee at the strawberry farm near West Barns and then returned via the Haddington “big yak” and along the coast (60 miles).

August 2017

Sunday 6th – the fitness ride went to Lauder for coffee via Humbie and Carfrae; back via Stow, Heriot and Crichton (70 miles).  The intermediate group went via Fairmilehead, Currie and the Lang Whang to Carnwath, round to West Linton for coffee and back through Penicuik and Roslyn (66 miles).

Sunday 13th – the fitness group went through Tranent to Gifford in sunshine, over the Rig to Longformacus, then back via Cranshaws and Whiteadder to Gifford for coffee and scones, home by Begbie Wood and Samuelston (67 miles).  The intermediate ride went to Gifford via Longyester and back via Haddington, Aberlady and the coast road (50 miles).

Thursday 17th – an evening ride to Fala, Tynehead, Rosebury Reservoir and back via Dalkieth (40 miles).

Sunday 20th – both the fitness and intermediate groups went to Innerleithen (and met each other there); the fitness group got there via Dalkeith, Leadburn and Peebles (with some going over the Meldons on the way), and came back over the Granites (with some going straight on to Middleton, others turning right to Heriot, then over to Fala Dam and Carberry), while the intermediate group did a similar route in reverse (south over the Granites, back via Peebles and Leadburn) (64-73 miles).

Sunday 27th – the fitness group did a long century ride through town to Cramond Brig, over the road bridge, via Dunfermline to Yetts O’Muckhart, up the glen to Dunning for coffee, via Milnathort to Falkland for lunch (Pillars of Hercules), over the Lomond Hills to Leslie, back to the bridge via Lochgelly (116 miles).  The intermediate group did a far more sensible century ride through Tranent, Pencaitland, Gifford, Stenton and Spott to Dunbar for coffee, then home via North Berwick, Kingston, Aberlady and the coast (100 km).  Finally, a beginners’ group went up Carberry hill to Cousland and back to gain an introduction to group riding.


The beginners’ ride group in Cousland, August 2017

September 2017

Sunday 3rd – the opening stage of the Tour of Britain and a few Portovelo members rode into town to see the team presentations and roll-out. The intermediate group rode along the coast to Aberlady, inland via Kingston and Haddington to Gifford for coffee, up Redstone Rig to watch the professionals then back via Gifford, East Saltoun, Pencaitland and Tranent (54 miles).  The fitness ride did a very similar route, but with a coffee stop in West Barns (near Dunbar) (60 miles).


The Tour of Britain nears the top of Redstone Rig, as seen by watching Portovelo members.

Thursday 7th – an evening ride to Aberlady, inland to Haddington, back by Longniddry and Tranent (33 miles).

Saturday 9th – a big group of adults and children rode to Musselburgh, along the Esk path, then via Inveresk to Fa’side hill to pick brambles, and back by a similar route (13 miles).


Family ride September 2017 – the children ready to leave!

Sunday 10th – the fitness ride went to Dawyck Botanic Garden via Gilmerton, Bonnyrigg, Leadburn, Broughton and Dreva, home via the Meldons, Gladhouse and Newbattle (72 miles).  The intermediates did a loop to the cafe in Gifford, going past Hailes Castle to E Linton on the way (50 miles).

Thursday 14th – the final evening ride of the year went through Ormiston to Pencaitland, back by Haddington, Longniddry and Prestonpans (30 miles).

Sunday 17th – the fitness group went up Carberry and through E Saltoun, Longyester, Garvald and Spott to Tyninghame, then back via Whitekirk, N Berwick and Aberlady (60 miles).  The intermediates went along the coast to Aberlady, then through Drem, Athelstaneford and Whitekirk to North Berwick for coffee; back via Kingston, Fenton Barnes and Aberlady (52 miles).

Sunday 24th – the intermediate group went to Penicuik by the Roslin cycle path, over Auchencorth Moss to Whitmuir for coffee, over to the A703 and back via Gladhouse Reservoir, Temple and Dalkeith (50 miles). The fitness group went to Innerleithen via Edgehead, Borthwick and the Granites, then along the Tweed valley via Elibank, through Clovenfords to the A7, then up the old coach road to Heriot and home by Crichton, Pathhead and Carberry (68 miles).

October 2017

Sunday 1st – a single group rode up Carberry to Pencaitland where one rider suffered a nasty fall and two others waited to help; the rest of the group continued to West Barns via Longyester and Stenton, returning via Haddington, the yak and Longniddry (60 miles).

Sunday 8th – the fitness group went up Redstone Rig, getting there via Carberry, Humbie and Longyester, then back down to Garvald, along to Gifford for coffee, then home the long way by Papple, Samuelston and the coast road (64 miles).  The intermediate group went to Linlithgow via Loanhead and Balerno, East and Mid Calder, Uphall and Dechmont, back through Winchburgh and Cramond (55 miles).

Sunday 15th – the intermediate ride went to Carlops via Loanhead, Roslin and Penicuik, then back round to Whitmuir for coffee, and home via Lamancha and Temple (51 miles). The fitness group went via Polton Brae to Carrington and Rosebury Reservoir, up the Granites, then via Heriot and Soutra to the Humbie Hub; home via Kidlaw, Bolton and McMerry (66 miles).

Sunday 22nd – the fitness group did a tour of the Bathgate Alps, including Beecraigs and Cairnpapple, getting there and back by Cramond Brig, Kirkliston and Winchburgh (63 miles).  The intermediate group went to Gifford via Tranent, traced a hilly Garvald loop back to Gifford for coffee, then home (49 miles).

Sunday 29th – the fitness ride started along the coast road, then turned inland beyond Aberlady, over the yak to Haddington, past Hailes Castle to Stenton, then through the Bield estate and via Whitekirk and Auldhame to North Berwick for coffee, home along the coast road (58 miles).  The intermediate ride also started along the coast, went inland at Longniddry to Samuelston, West Saltoun, Windy Mains, Fala, Humbie, Gifford and Haddington for coffee, home via Tranent (49 miles).

November 2017

Sunday 5th – on a cold, sunny day, the fitness ride went to Whitmuir via Sheriffhall, Rosslynlea, Penicuik, and the moor road to West Linton; home by Leadburn, Temple and Mayfield (52 miles).  The intermediate group went to Tyninghame, most getting there via Aberlady, Kingston and N Berwick, and back by Hailes Castle, Haddington and Tranent; a few taking a shorter route (45, 51 miles).


Heading over the moor towards West Linton in autumn sunshine, November 2017

Sunday 12th – another cold, sunny day saw the intermediate group make their way to Tyninghame by Cockenzie, the Hopetoun Monument, Athelstaneford and East Linton; back by Hailes Castle, Haddington, Longniddry and the coast (50 miles); the fitness group also went to Tyninghame via Pencaitland, Gifford and Luggate Burn; back by E Linton, Athelstaneford, Longniddry and the coast road (52 miles).

Sunday 19th – yet another cold, sunny day, and the fitness ride went up Fa’side, through Ormiston to Pathhead, via Crichton to the A7, up the Granites, down to Heriot, then over Soutra to the cafe; home via Humbie and Cousland (54 miles).  The intermediates went to North Berwick via the coastal road, had coffee and cakes, then went inland towards Drem for the return (46 miles).

Sunday 26th – fourth cold, sunny Sunday in a row, and the fitness ride went along the coast road through Dirleton and North Berwick to Tyninghame for coffee; home by Athelstaneford, the Hopetoun monument then Boggs Holdings, Elphinstone and Carberry (54 miles).  The intermediate group also followed the coast road to North Berwick, then via Kingston and Athelstaneford to Haddington for coffee; then home via Gifford, Pencaitland and Tranent (50 miles).

December 2017

Sunday 3rd – sunny but milder as the intermediate ride went via Pencaitland, Samuelston and Bolton to Gifford for coffee; back through Haddington, Elvington, Longniddry and the coast (39 miles). The fitness group started on the coast road, then from Longniddry went by Coates and the big yak to Haddington, over Whitelaw Hill and round to Gifford, Humbie for coffee and home via Cousland (50 miles).

Sunday 10th – on a very cold day, the fitness ride went along the coast to N Berwick then over to Haddington for coffee and back by Pencaitland, Gorebridge and Sheriffhall (51 miles).  The intermediate group played even safer and went to North Berwick by the coast road there and back (41 miles).

Sunday 17th – a poor forecast meant reduced numbers, and ice on minor roads restricted route choice: the fitness ride went through Gilmerton, Straiton and Mount Lothian to Gorebridge, past Vogrie to the A68, to Humbie for coffee, then back via Pencaitland and Tranent (49 miles).

Sunday 24th – unseasonally mild, but very windy as both groups started together up the Smeaton farm road; the fitness group went via Middleton to the Granites, then from Heriot to Soutra for coffee, back along the A68 to Pathhead and down Carberry (48 miles).  The intermediate group also went  Soutra, but via Soutra Mains, Oxenfoord Castle and Fala Mains, returning by Humbie, Peaston, Cousland and Carberry (40 miles).

Sunday 31st – another very windy day for the last rides of 2017: the intermediate group went to Humbie for coffee, back by Fala, Salters road and Cousland (30 miles); the fitness group went up Fa’side, then via Samuelston and the yak to E Linton and coffee at Smeaton, back via Haddington, Seton and the coast road (51 miles).