Project:
TOUR OF 10 MALTS

Project:
TOUR OF
10 MALTS

PROJECT: TOUR OF 10 MALTS


Choose a road bike or indeed any bike and saddle up to cover some sweet distance joining the dots on the World’s most famous whisky islands. We will mix it up with some short trekking stages, plus some serene sea kayaking.

A highlight of the trip are the sea stages in robust, stable double sea kayaks. After all, most of the distilleries are on the shores. One of those stages will see you make the exciting inter-island ’hop’ from Islay to Jura too, possibly twice – currents dependent. Everything is supported by our vehicle and trailer and once you’ve ‘bagged’ all the distilleries, kick back and enjoy the view from the campsite of our last stop, the Jura Distillery, and nearby Hotel. Maybe enjoy a wee dram (or 10) to celebrate in style.

If you can’t make our scheduled departure, we can run this adventure on a bespoke basis for you and your mates. A minimum of 6 people is required to run the trip. Email us to find out more.

Trip Highlights:

– Totally unique multisport concept with perfectly quiet cycling roads, stunning foot trails and the fine sandy beaches to cast off your sea kayak
– Visit these serene Inner Hebridean islands – a real treat
– Enjoy a few drams in the shadows of the distilleries themselves
– Kayak from Islay to Jura in an exciting sea crossing, with the famous Paps of Jura framing the view

 

 

Friday 13th July
Meet at Kennacraig on the Friday morning at 0900hrs, and take the ferry as foot passengers-with-bikes to Port Ellen on Islay. We will then cycle away from port on a very short 3-mile ride to the ‘big three’ distilleries in south Islay, some connected by a beautiful walkway. Then at dusk we beat it back to our camping accommodation. (On Islay we will be supported by a vehicle+trailer).

Saturday 14th July
The riding will take place on sublime coastal and moorland roads, now headed north to meet the kayak logistic at Bowmore, and a watery kayak venture across Loch Indaal to Bruichladdich. From here we are going to head through Port Charlotte and drop you into an amazing trek to a beach beyond compare from where you will soon discover Kilchoman distillery and your waiting bikes. Time to head towards Port Askaig and notch up about 30 miles including two sweet little cul-de-sac roads each with distilleries awaiting. Ready in time for transition to kayaks and a tea-time trip across the sound to Jura where the bikes will have been taken ready for you to reach Craighouse .. 10-miles distant, and your home for the night. Distillery + Hotel + Showers + Camping beside the sea. Bliss.

Sunday 15th July
Up a decent time to clear the head and cycle back to port, across the sound on the small ferry (unless the low tide current is navigable and you are game for the paddle) and all in time for the mid-afternoon ferry back to Kennacraig, from Port Askaig, or a taxi back to the airport. At Kennacraig you will be reunited with your cars or our other support vehicle and soon homeward bound, no doubt with a couple of cherished bottles now in your holdall.

(Exact itinerary subject to change, but we sure intend to reach all 10 distilleries)

The camping accommodation will require an additional holdall, sleeping bag and tent brought on the trip and stored on the support vehicle. the intention is for you to use your own camping equipment and for us to transport it, although we can hire you a tent if you wish, for a small incremental fee.

Rat Race will provide:

  • Vehicle support for the team, with some other transport options locally, and after the trip. Though ideally, you’ll be car sharing to Kennacraig.
  • Stable double sea kayaks
  • Night 1: B&B / Hotel accommodation in Port Ellen area. A plan will be circulated as trip bookings conclude.
  • Night 2: Camping at Craighouse beside the Jura Hotel and Distillery.
  • Ferry transits from and to Kennacraig port.
  • Accomplished support that keeps you on track, and a skilled kayak guide.

The participant will provide:
Their own bike, helmet, small rucksack, cycling gear, footwear, waterproofs (recommended with taped seams), and personal safety kit and overnight camping kit such as tent, mat and sleeping bag. A towel and a change of clothes for after the activities is also recommended. The mid-summer nature of this trip should not require bike lights, though these are good for daytime safety, and a headtorch may be handy during camping. You should be familiar with your bike and on top of its reliability. Additional meals to breakfast will be funded by yourselves.

A full kit list will be circulated upon booking of the trip.

We have rated this challenge as Technical rating 5/10 and Endurance rating 7/10. What does this mean?

Technical rating 5/10
This is straight-forward road cycling in a sublime environment. The technical grade comes from the kayaking and the trekking just making this more of a multi-sport adventure, albeit at a sedate pace. You are required to be a reasonable cyclist. We can get you up to speed with kayaking before setting off across the bay, and as always, weather permitting.

Endurance rating 7/10
Participants should expect cycle stage lengths of about 5, 30 and 20 miles, on consecutive days. Whilst there will be variances in the groups abilities, we will manage the journey carefully to give the best possible day out. Think of yourselves as a single team on tour.

Food and Bev

Provided within the trip costs are:

  • Savoury and sweet snacks, sports drinks (isotonic and carb-based), water and hot drinks from flasks whilst on the route, provided from our mobile ‘pit stop’ vehicle.*
  •  Alcoholic or non-alcoholic drink for all group members in a pub/hotel in Port Askaig to celebrate a job well done.
  • Overnight B&B in Port Ellen.

Participants will cover costs for:

  • Breakfast prior to departure at Kennacraig/ meals on ferries.
  • Breakfast at the overnight camp on Jura: Advice will be given on what to bring, and assistance in the preparation of.
  • Dinners on both evenings (Fri and Sat).
  • Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks at the final overnight during the trip, except 1 complimentary one that we will provide.

*Some Gluten-free and Vegan provision will be made although if you have food intolerances please do ensure you check with us on our provision as you may need to augment with your own supplies. Please contact us with any specific dietary requirements. Please note that the provision whilst on the route does not consist of ‘full meals’ and will be more snack-based grab n’ go options, to reflect the journey being undertaken. We would advise in all cases that you augment this provision with your own foodstuffs. We would also advise that if you have sports nutrition products that you know work for you, please bring them with you.

Accommodation

Provided within the trip costs are:

  • Overnight B&B in Port Ellen.
  • Camping at Craighouse, including use of facilities, provision of tents and campsite fees (participants bring own sleeping bag and roll mat).

Participants will cover costs for:

It is recommended that for those travelling, local accommodation is sought close to Kennacraig for the night preceding the Challenge and for the night following the Challenge, depending on ongoing transport plans. Or you may wish to fly to Islay and accommodate in the Port Ellen area on the Thursday night, to meet the group on their arrival to Port Ellen on Friday.

Transport

Provided within the trip costs are:

  • Full on-course support by our vehicle, local to Islay and Jura.
  • Foot passenger + bike ferry crossing costs. Return: Islay <> Kennacraig.

Participants will cover costs for:

  • Travel to Kennacraig area.
  • Parking of vehicles in Kennacraig whilst on the islands.
  • Onward travel from Kennacraig area – if using own transport.
  • Rat Race can offer onward travel to/ from Kennacraig from the Glasgow area on a first-come, first-served basis for a nominal fee, travelling in an event vehicle. Please enquire directly with us on this.

How far is the route? In the context of your regular sportive cycle rides these distances will seem short. But this is not your regular hurried and constant ride. It is 5 miles, 30 miles and 20 miles of gentle road riding. The route will be shared in full in advance of the Challenge commencing.

How hard is it and how fit do I need to be? It’s a not physically tough. It’s serene. The treks are short. The kayaking might test some lesser used muscles but there will be no hurry or great distances involved. 4 miles kayaking in total. We intend to allow time to breath in the surroundings rather than racing through it.

What type of terrain is it? Undulating single lane tarmac roads. The trails are very good gravel and sandy beaches, with some grass paths and walkways. Add onto that some water, and at worst you might just get wet feet.

What might the weather be like? That is hard to say until forecasting is available 10-days out. It can potentially be breezy, but the nature of the cycling routes will have you headed in various directions, and never pushing into the wind for long. Good weatherproof clothing is essential, just in case the breeze is loaded with rain. But we doubt that it will be cold.

What wildlife might we see? When you are not focusing on your front wheel, we hope to see deer, eagles, otters and other sea-life. Midges are unlikely. We will give expert advice and links on midge and tick defence and treatments.

What will the camping experience be like? As long as you are warm, you will love it! Plan ahead for comfort. Pack for comfort.

What if I get lost? Unlikely, as you will be with qualified guides and support that will intend to keep the group together. If separations are required then the guides will have a plan for how to manage this.

What if I get hurt? Well, this is possible, as with any bike ride. There at least, not so many cars out here. You can call 999 if it’s a true Emergency but our team will be close in the loop to affect best responses. We have First Aid trained staff on the trip with a medical kit. So if you need assistance we will be there; similarly if you need or wish to withdraw from the route, we will sort it. We’d rather you got to Jura though – this is the island whisky grail!

Where will you stay? It’s an early-ish start in Kennacraig, so you might need to stay nearby as your own plan. After that we are together in Port Ellen on Islay and in Craighouse on Jura.

What is included? Check out the tabs above to see what we provide on kit/ equipment and what is included as far as food/ accommodation/ transport is concerned. You can download the full trip notes file HERE.

How do I get back after the Challenge is over? You could fly to and fro the airport, though we suspect that the ferry trip is the way. We will land at Kennacraig ferry port at 1735 and join cars and other transport to head homewards. We will be able to help the few that would like a lift to Glasgow transport links such as Airport and Rail Station, for a late evening flight or train, though it’s a fair journey back. You might plan for the sleeper train for example.

 


13-15th JULY 2018
ISLAY + JURA

Fancy a dram or 10? Visit every distillery on the islands of Islay and Jura by bike, kayak and short trek.

Road Bike, Kayak and Foot: 3 day, 2 night
Kayaking, Guided, B+B and camping

      What do these mean?

Technical Rating 5/10
Endurance Rating: 7/10

£449

Price is per person

13-15th JULY 2018
ISLAY + JURA

Fancy a dram or 10? Visit every distillery on the islands of Islay and Jura by bike, kayak and short trek.

Road Bike, Kayak and Foot: 3 day, 2 night
Kayaking, Guided, B+B and camping

   
What do these mean?

Technical Rating 5/10
Endurance Rating: 7/10

£449

Price is per person

Choose a road bike or indeed any bike and saddle up to cover some sweet distance joining the dots on the World’s most famous whisky islands. We will mix it up with some short trekking stages, plus some serene sea kayaking.

A highlight of the trip are the sea stages in robust, stable double sea kayaks. After all, most of the distilleries are on the shores. One of those stages will see you make the exciting inter-island ’hop’ from Islay to Jura too, possibly twice – currents dependent. Everything is supported by our vehicle and trailer and once you’ve ‘bagged’ all the distilleries, kick back and enjoy the view from the campsite of our last stop, the Jura Distillery, and nearby Hotel. Maybe enjoy a wee dram (or 10) to celebrate in style.

If you can’t make our scheduled departure, we can run this adventure on a bespoke basis for you and your mates. A minimum of 6 people is required to run the trip. Email us to find out more.

Trip Highlights:

– Totally unique multisport concept with perfectly quiet cycling roads, stunning foot trails and the fine sandy beaches to cast off your sea kayak
– Visit these serene Inner Hebridean islands – a real treat
– Enjoy a few drams in the shadows of the distilleries themselves
– Kayak from Islay to Jura in an exciting sea crossing, with the famous Paps of Jura framing the view

 

 

Friday 13th July
Meet at Kennacraig on the Friday morning at 0900hrs, and take the ferry as foot passengers-with-bikes to Port Ellen on Islay. We will then cycle away from port on a very short 3-mile ride to the ‘big three’ distilleries in south Islay, some connected by a beautiful walkway. Then at dusk we beat it back to our camping accommodation. (On Islay we will be supported by a vehicle+trailer).

Saturday 14th July
The riding will take place on sublime coastal and moorland roads, now headed north to meet the kayak logistic at Bowmore, and a watery kayak venture across Loch Indaal to Bruichladdich. From here we are going to head through Port Charlotte and drop you into an amazing trek to a beach beyond compare from where you will soon discover Kilchoman distillery and your waiting bikes. Time to head towards Port Askaig and notch up about 30 miles including two sweet little cul-de-sac roads each with distilleries awaiting. Ready in time for transition to kayaks and a tea-time trip across the sound to Jura where the bikes will have been taken ready for you to reach Craighouse .. 10-miles distant, and your home for the night. Distillery + Hotel + Showers + Camping beside the sea. Bliss.

Sunday 15th July
Up a decent time to clear the head and cycle back to port, across the sound on the small ferry (unless the low tide current is navigable and you are game for the paddle) and all in time for the mid-afternoon ferry back to Kennacraig, from Port Askaig, or a taxi back to the airport. At Kennacraig you will be reunited with your cars or our other support vehicle and soon homeward bound, no doubt with a couple of cherished bottles now in your holdall.

(Exact itinerary subject to change, but we sure intend to reach all 10 distilleries)

The camping accommodation will require an additional holdall, sleeping bag and tent brought on the trip and stored on the support vehicle. the intention is for you to use your own camping equipment and for us to transport it, although we can hire you a tent if you wish, for a small incremental fee.

 

Rat Race will provide:

  • Vehicle support for the team, with some other transport options locally, and after the trip. Though ideally, you’ll be car sharing to Kennacraig.
  • Stable double sea kayaks
  • Night 1: B&B / Hotel accommodation in Port Ellen area. A plan will be circulated as trip bookings conclude.
  • Night 2: Camping at Craighouse beside the Jura Hotel and Distillery.
  • Ferry transits from and to Kennacraig port.
  • Accomplished support that keeps you on track, and a skilled kayak guide.

The participant will provide:
Their own bike, helmet, small rucksack, cycling gear, footwear, waterproofs (recommended with taped seams), and personal safety kit and overnight camping kit such as tent, mat and sleeping bag. A towel and a change of clothes for after the activities is also recommended. The mid-summer nature of this trip should not require bike lights, though these are good for daytime safety, and a headtorch may be handy during camping. You should be familiar with your bike and on top of its reliability. Additional meals to breakfast will be funded by yourselves.

A full kit list will be circulated upon booking of the trip.

We have rated this challenge as Technical rating 5/10 and Endurance rating 7/10. What does this mean?

Technical rating 5/10
This is straight-forward road cycling in a sublime environment. The technical grade comes from the kayaking and the trekking just making this more of a multi-sport adventure, albeit at a sedate pace. You are required to be a reasonable cyclist. We can get you up to speed with kayaking before setting off across the bay, and as always, weather permitting.

Endurance rating 7/10
Participants should expect cycle stage lengths of about 5, 30 and 20 miles, on consecutive days. Whilst there will be variances in the groups abilities, we will manage the journey carefully to give the best possible day out. Think of yourselves as a single team on tour.

Food and Bev

Provided within the trip costs are:

  • Savoury and sweet snacks, sports drinks (isotonic and carb-based), water and hot drinks from flasks whilst on the route, provided from our mobile ‘pit stop’ vehicle.*
  •  Alcoholic or non-alcoholic drink for all group members in a pub/hotel in Port Askaig to celebrate a job well done.
  • Overnight B&B in Port Ellen.

Participants will cover costs for:

  • Breakfast prior to departure at Kennacraig/ meals on ferries.
  • Breakfast at the overnight camp on Jura: Advice will be given on what to bring, and assistance in the preparation of.
  • Dinners on both evenings (Fri and Sat).
  • Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks at the final overnight during the trip, except 1 complimentary one that we will provide.

*Some Gluten-free and Vegan provision will be made although if you have food intolerances please do ensure you check with us on our provision as you may need to augment with your own supplies. Please contact us with any specific dietary requirements. Please note that the provision whilst on the route does not consist of ‘full meals’ and will be more snack-based grab n’ go options, to reflect the journey being undertaken. We would advise in all cases that you augment this provision with your own foodstuffs. We would also advise that if you have sports nutrition products that you know work for you, please bring them with you.

Accommodation

Provided within the trip costs are:

  • Overnight B&B in Port Ellen.
  • Camping at Craighouse, including use of facilities, provision of tents and campsite fees (participants bring own sleeping bag and roll mat).

Participants will cover costs for:

It is recommended that for those travelling, local accommodation is sought close to Kennacraig for the night preceding the Challenge and for the night following the Challenge, depending on ongoing transport plans. Or you may wish to fly to Islay and accommodate in the Port Ellen area on the Thursday night, to meet the group on their arrival to Port Ellen on Friday.

Transport

Provided within the trip costs are:

  • Full on-course support by our vehicle, local to Islay and Jura.
  • Foot passenger + bike ferry crossing costs. Return: Islay <> Kennacraig.

Participants will cover costs for:

  • Travel to Kennacraig area.
  • Parking of vehicles in Kennacraig whilst on the islands.
  • Onward travel from Kennacraig area – if using own transport.
  • Rat Race can offer onward travel to/ from Kennacraig from the Glasgow area on a first-come, first-served basis for a nominal fee, travelling in an event vehicle. Please enquire directly with us on this.

How far is the route? In the context of your regular sportive cycle rides these distances will seem short. But this is not your regular hurried and constant ride. It is 5 miles, 30 miles and 20 miles of gentle road riding. The route will be shared in full in advance of the Challenge commencing.

How hard is it and how fit do I need to be? It’s a not physically tough. It’s serene. The treks are short. The kayaking might test some lesser used muscles but there will be no hurry or great distances involved. 4 miles kayaking in total. We intend to allow time to breath in the surroundings rather than racing through it.

What type of terrain is it? Undulating single lane tarmac roads. The trails are very good gravel and sandy beaches, with some grass paths and walkways. Add onto that some water, and at worst you might just get wet feet.

What might the weather be like? That is hard to say until forecasting is available 10-days out. It can potentially be breezy, but the nature of the cycling routes will have you headed in various directions, and never pushing into the wind for long. Good weatherproof clothing is essential, just in case the breeze is loaded with rain. But we doubt that it will be cold.

What wildlife might we see? When you are not focusing on your front wheel, we hope to see deer, eagles, otters and other sea-life. Midges are unlikely. We will give expert advice and links on midge and tick defence and treatments.

What will the camping experience be like? As long as you are warm, you will love it! Plan ahead for comfort. Pack for comfort.

What if I get lost? Unlikely, as you will be with qualified guides and support that will intend to keep the group together. If separations are required then the guides will have a plan for how to manage this.

What if I get hurt? Well, this is possible, as with any bike ride. There at least, not so many cars out here. You can call 999 if it’s a true Emergency but our team will be close in the loop to affect best responses. We have First Aid trained staff on the trip with a medical kit. So if you need assistance we will be there; similarly if you need or wish to withdraw from the route, we will sort it. We’d rather you got to Jura though – this is the island whisky grail!

Where will you stay? It’s an early-ish start in Kennacraig, so you might need to stay nearby as your own plan. After that we are together in Port Ellen on Islay and in Craighouse on Jura.

What is included? Check out the tabs above to see what we provide on kit/ equipment and what is included as far as food/ accommodation/ transport is concerned. You can download the full trip notes file HERE.

How do I get back after the Challenge is over? You could fly to and fro the airport, though we suspect that the ferry trip is the way. We will land at Kennacraig ferry port at 1735 and join cars and other transport to head homewards. We will be able to help the few that would like a lift to Glasgow transport links such as Airport and Rail Station, for a late evening flight or train, though it’s a fair journey back. You might plan for the sleeper train for example.