the william wallace trail

trail part 3: The Isle of Skye

Mountain Bike Rider magazine said that Skye boasts the best singletrack trail in Britain, with magnificent views of the famous Cuillin mountain range


The trail

In Scotland’s Inner Hebrides, you are never far from water. Be it sea or freshwater lochs, waterfalls, fast-flowing rivers or tiny streams, you can rest assured that the Isle of Skye will provide a feast for the eyes. From the fishing village of Mallaig, you will travel to Skye by sea. An motorboat trip will deliver you and your bikes to Elgol, where you will enjoy tremendous views of the world-famous Black Cuillin mountain range. There, you will be able to spot a variety of wildlife and birdlife from seals to sea eagles, and whales to puffins to porpoises. Skye is everything we imagine the Highlands to be: wild and mesmerising. We will take time for a short walk to explore the area around Loch Coruisk where the views of the mountains are incredible.

We will then collect our bikes and saddle up for an awesome rock-strewn singletrack which splits the island. The Glen Sligachan route is a classic cross-country epic that slides between the red and black Cuillin mountains. A 15-mile banquet of jagged mountains, velvet moors and the beautiful Loch Sligachan results in fairytale cycling scenery reminscent of The Lord of the Rings. The route finishes at the historic Sligachan Inn for celebratory beers under the shadow of the mountains.

Riding surface

The singletrack trail is hardpacked and rocky. Most of it rideable but it’s a bit technical in places. Close to the finish there are a few drainage ditches constructed across the path, most of which can be jumped or hopped. Be prepared to stop if you’re not that confident about hopping them. So technically not ‘extreme’ but it’s enough to focus your attention.

Average mileage

It might be considered a ‘rest day’, but we will bike for 24km, mostly on singletrack.

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