Ed’s Native E-Bike Gravel Rambles: Ed Hood’s love for using a motorcycle was ‘rekindled’ by his Ribble gravel e-Bike and he’s rediscovering the native paths of the Kingdom of Fife within the east of Scotland. Extra coastal views, castles, deserted villages and a pair of particular timber.
# You’ll be able to see Ed’s first E-Bike route HERE. #
Ribble trying good in Aberdour!
For Secteur Two of the Fife Coastal Path exploration I selected Aberdour to Kirkcaldy; to get to Aberdour from my residence in Dysart you need to head west to return again east. I made a decision to take the ‘B’ street over the 632 ft excessive Binn Hill which stands behind the city of Burntisland – which we’ll return to once we head again east from Aberdour. The street passes inside a few hundred yards of the domestically well-known, ‘Kissing Timber’ – two sycamores, both aspect of the street in an in any other case treeless panorama.
The ‘Kissing timber’
Nobody appears to know their historical past however they’re a deal with for the attention, particularly within the early morning gentle.
Burntisland warning signal
Urgent on up the lengthy drag to the Binn ridge I came across the signal which provides truthful warning however which, as a typical bike owner I ignored, headed south and started to assume that the, ‘suspension nonsense’ which I’ve all the time mocked won’t be such a nasty concept in spite of everything?
The article of plunging down the gnarly drop was to seek out the stays of a village of some 564 souls which stood on the slopes of the Binn and at one time boasted a Free Church Mission Corridor, college, store and soccer pitch.
Binnend information plaque
It was based in 1881 to accommodate employees within the massive shale oil refining plant which stood reverse the place Burntisland Golf Membership now stands. Nature has been fast to say again what belongs to her and now solely ruins remind you of a vibrant village and trade. Shale oil being usurped by cheaper oil imported from Russia and the USA.
On to Aberdour and the citadel then, legend has it there’s treasure buried there; the earliest components of the constructing date again some 800 years and it’s one of many two oldest castles nonetheless standing in Scotland. I’d have favored to get in to take some higher footage nevertheless it’s closed for, ‘excessive stage masonry inspection’ and in addition to, I didn’t have the £6:00 entrance payment in me again pocket.
Wee railway brig
The Coastal Path does what it says on the tin and follows the Forth all the way in which to Burntisland, the floor varies between filth with difficult, polished roots to gravel to good easy tarmac. Initially the primary Aberdeen to London rail line is in your left however there’s a wee bridge takes you beneath the monitor and there’s no extra sea view, a excessive banking in your left and a fence or wall in your proper till you arrive in Burntisland. So named from a time again in historical past when the native fishermen’s huts burned down and the identify caught.
Alcan information plaque
Shale oil wasn’t the one trade misplaced to Burntisland, after I was a youthful man the ‘Ali Bam’ – the British Aluminium works dominated the city.
The plant refined alumina from uncooked bauxite ore which got here into the docks from Ghana, the method leaving a effective movie of purple mud everywhere in the city. A housing property now stands the place the works as soon as had been and rig service vessels change bulk carriers on the moorings.
Large submarine cable drums
The Shipyard remains to be there although; now a fabrication facility for the oil trade; ships first rolled down the slipway in 1918 proper up till 1969 when the final ship was launched.
The ‘path’ takes to the primary coast street out of Burntisland however there’s a pleasant, quick cycle path and that doesn’t imply it takes a break from historical past.
On the river aspect of the street between Burntisland and Kinghorn stands the monument to Alexander 111, Scotland’s final Celtic King. A person for the women, he was warned to not take the difficult path from the ferry at Queensferry to the place his younger spouse waited for him at Kinghorn Fortress on a stormy evening; however he ignored the warnings, his horse misplaced footing, with steed and monarch discovered useless on the rocks above the seashore on the morning of twentieth March 1286.
Vacation Park view
A tad incongruously, simply throughout the way in which is Pettycur Bay Vacation Camp, scene of, ‘Life on the Bay’ TV present with the very best vacation properties having fun with beautiful views again to Burntisland, the river and Lothians.
Bike on Coastal Path, Inchkeith within the background
At Kinghorn we’re again on the gnarly stuff, quick gravel alternates with steps and people difficult sections the place large polished rocks poke as much as catch you unawares. The views are beautiful although, out throughout the Forth to Edinburgh, the massive island you see is Inch Keith the place legend says that in 1493, King James IV transported a mute lady and two infants to see what could be, ‘the language of God?’ Some say it’s a fable and there’s no stable file of the results of this grim experiment.
Seafield Tower stands beside the trail simply west of Kirkcaldy, now a destroy however again in 1542 it was the stately residence of the Multrare household.
Previous the tower there’s a non-public housing property which sprawls alongside the coast on the location of what was the huge Seafield Colliery advanced which together with the Frances Colliery on the east finish of the city, framed Kirkcaldy. Now all that is still is a plaque beside a kids’s play park, a tragic reminiscence of trade which as soon as supported 1000’s.
Adam Smith Shut
Kirkcaldy’s most well-known son – no, not the late darts participant, Jocky Wilson – is Adam Smith, economist and thinker who was a pioneer of political economic system. There’s a live performance corridor within the city which bears his identify however we don’t actually give him a lot recognition; albeit there’s ‘Adam Smith’s Shut’ a 328’ lengthy passage from the Excessive Avenue right down to the promenade with key occasions in his life inscribed within the paving slabs beneath your ft – which is about as a lot as the good man will get.
I started my final wanderings with considered one of my favorite Kirkcaldy watering holes, so greatest embrace one other as my meanderings take me again to Dysart. The Feuars Arms is the true deal, an authentic Edwardian pub with acres of Doulton ceramic tiles and exquisite stained glass home windows. There’s extra space behind the bar than normal in a pub to accommodate the additional workers wanted to deal with the human waves washing in from the close by factories.
And let’s shut with what’s left of these factories and the trade that made Kirkcaldy well-known and gave it a novel however not disagreeable – however then I’m a Kirkcaldy boy – aroma.
The odor of linseed oil; there’s even a poem about it.
Linoleum is a ground overlaying comprised of solidified linseed oil together with wooden flour, or cork mud, over a burlap or canvas backing. The explanation for the buildings being so tall was that after the linseed primarily based paste was utilized to the canvas backing it needed to dry, the heavy materials was draped over metal beams on the prime of the buildings – a lot as when making use of previous to wallpaper then draped down to only above the ground stage, this distance was round 90’ and decided the size of the rolls. Yours really labored there when he left college – the very best job I ever had. . .
Subsequent time we’ll head additional east. . .
# You’ll be able to examine Ed’s journey from time trial bike to Ribble e-Bike HERE. #