In an ideal world, we would all have as much time off from work as we wanted and roads would be for everyone, not just car drivers! But we know that’s not the case, so pragmatic solutions need to be found to make riding iconic routes without being mixed up with too much traffic or needing to use all your holiday allowance at one go. Bikepacking route-creator Markus Stitz was hooked on the idea of the NorthCoast500 route, but wanted to design a more accessible version which needed less time off work and avoided some of the busier sections of the standard road-based route.
Markus’ finished route is a more do-able 200 miles (320kms) in length and takes in plenty of quiet gravel trails. His route can be fitted into a week and makes use of local train services to avoid the need to use a vehicle. His busy schedule meant he had to reccy the route at a time of year when very few tourists were around and at times it looks like he has the whole route to himself. He’s put together a great film of the trip which showcases the stunning scenery and great riding that you will encounter. For anyone interested in taking on Markus’ route, if you want to cut down on the faff of bringing your own bike, you could consider arriving by public transport and getting a hire bike from Ticket to Ride like Markus did.
You can find all the details of the route on Markus’ website here and you can find a link to the komoot route file below: