Glentress is the UK’s mountain biking mecca and is home to over 50 miles (80 km) of hand built and natural mountain biking trails.
If you have a full or half day to spare or even a few hours after work in summer and want to take part in some adventure travel activities to get the adrenaline pumping or just want to enjoy a casual ride with the kids through a beautiful setting then Glentress has something for everyone.
Getting to Glentress
Situated in the heart of Glentress Forest near the village of Peebles in the Scottish Borders it is only a short 40 minute drive from Edinburgh and 1 hr 15 minutes from Glasgow.
It boasts a huge selection of trails with a variety of different skill levels from the gravel and paved green trails to the expert black graded trails which are not for the fainthearted.
If you have never been mountain biking before then don’t be scared. The Glentress Skills Area is the perfect place to start. It is green graded on a simple, safe and not-too-long loop which allows you to build confidence and practice your riding skills on features that you might encounter on the trails further up. Just tackle what you feel comfortable with!
Been mountain biking before (or just want to watch some crazy people in action)? Then the Glentress Freeride Park is where you want to head. With a variety of features including small, medium and large jumps it gives you a chance to showoff and improve your skills.
There really is something for everyone, which is why you can never get sick of the place as there is always new levels to progress to.
Riding at Glentress
When you arrive you have two options. Start at the bottom car park and start a hard thigh burning 20 – 30 min uphill slog. Or start at the second car park half way between all the trails.
I will never forget my first time there, I though I was doing pretty well when we started at the bottom only to watch as a woman boosted past me exclaiming it was her third time up that day!
Arriving in the second car park you can either take various trails back down, spend some time in the free ride park and skills area or keep climbing to reach more trails.
Obviously the higher you go the better the views. Overlooking the picturesque Tweed valley, sprawling green hills and cute houses dot the countryside. Absolutely fantastic on a rare sunny day in Scotland.
The best bit about the Glentress mountain bike park is that there are so many trail options you easily can do a different combination every time you go. Personally I like to ride right to the top then head all the way down to the bottom. That way you get at least 40 minutes of downhill.
Alternatively Cole likes to go up and down several smaller sections a few times to break the monotonous climbs. With all the smooth fast flowing trails merging together there are loads of opportunities to get up some serious speed in a controlled manner.
Our favourite blue trails like “Berm Baby Berm” and “Good Game” flow through the dense forest with small tabletop jumps that you can rollover if you are not that confident and berms to get you around the corners faster.
The world famous “Spooky Wood” red trail has a killer climb before one of the best descents ever. Starting with three rock drops the trails then just flows and flows and flows across open hill country before entering the dense forest below.
Not only is the biking awesome but the facilities are superb too. There is a new café, plentiful car parking, an excellent bike hire store and a first aid center just in case all located at the brand spanking new Glentress Peel. For more info check out the local Glentress Forestry site with all your trail maps, guides and directions.
All these amenities give Glentress a great vibe and make for an excellent day out. We love sitting outside the café with a hard earned cake/coffee combo soaking up the atmosphere and listening to all the stories of the days riding.
So next time you are looking for some adventure travel activities, pack a picnic, pump up your tires and get out there!
Tips For Unwinding While Travelling
People often don’t get the most out of their travelling experiences, and often the reason is a surprising one. People slam themselves with unrealistic schedules and try to do too much in too short of a time, and this winds up deteriorating the quality of the experiences that you want to have. So we have come up with a quick little guide with the help of our friends to help you get that needed decompression on your vacation:
Here are three key ways to savor that vacation many times more than you normally would just by running like a chicken with its head recently cut off. Note that all of them require time, and while time is precious, that’s actually why it’s that much more important to use it wisely.
Stay Inside For One Day:
Believe it or not, you don’t have to spend every waking moment of every vacation out there tramping around checking items off of a list. Whether you realize it or not, this is a lot like work, and can be very stressful.
There’s nothing wrong with taking a day to do next to nothing. Casinos online are an excellent way to pass the time in a fun fashion, or any other sort of game that catches your fancy. Also, get your food ordered in for once. Get a reset. The rest of your vacation will be 1000% better.
Treat Yourself to a Nice Meal:
Go out and find the restaurant wherever you are where you most want to go. If you’re in a group, vote on it, but make sure everybody’s happy to go there. If you’re alone, this is that much easier. Either way, pick an excellent restaurant. Go there and absolutely take your time, meaning don’t even think about leaving that place less than 2 hours after you’ve gone in. Enjoy every aspect of the meal slowly, contemplating the ambience and the flavors of what you are eating. It’s a small thing, but it’s a big thing at the same time.
Watch The Sun Rise or Set:
This is especially something to do if you can find a great lookout point. One thing that really works is to go to the lookout point, and just chill with a camera, even your phone’s camera, and take pictures every 5 minutes or so and document the sun going up or down until it’s done.
It’s incredibly relaxing, and you will take with you a serious series of souvenirs that are eminently shareable with friends and loved ones. You can even turn the whole thing into one big time-lapse photo. And the act of calmly and quietly observing one’s environment is in and of itself so relaxing and rewarding in surprising ways.
Tips For Hitting The Orlando Area For Holidays
Planning on visiting the famous theme parks in and around Orlando soon? This is definitely something everyone should do at least once in their lifetimes, whether as a couple, with the whole family, or even solo. Here are some pro tips to make the experience the absolute best one possible:
Don’t Leave Anything for the Last Minute:
You have to understand that this is an extremely popular destination for tourists, so much so that if you don’t have things planned out beforehand, you could be shut out of a lot of things you actually wanted to see, because they actually fill up to capacity well in advance sometimes. Especially, make very sure to get your theme park tickets before you go. Doing so will save you so much potential headache and stress.
Think Carefully about When You Want to Go:
Orlando is in a particularly hot and humid part of this Earth, but it’s not that way all year round.
If your schedule permits, you may want to consider going during March and April. This is a great time because the summer heat hasn’t started slamming the area yet, and because it’s still during the school year, the place isn’t packed with tourists.
The second best time of the year to go would be September and October. The temperatures will be roughly the same as in March and April, and prices will be even lower and crowds even less. The one caveat is that this is technically in the middle of Florida’s hurricane season, and while Orlando is quite a ways inland, there still exists some risk, albeit a minor one.
November through the beginning of March is an excellent time to go for weather (although as of this writing it went below freezing in Orlando for the first time in 30 years, this is a very rare event; usually things in Orlando are quite balmy, even in the absolute dead of winter). The problem with this time of year is that a lot of people are on vacation, especially during Christmas break, Presidents’ Week, and Spring Break. This means crowds and marked-up prices everywhere.
Lastly is the summer. Unless you are a gecko or an iguana, you probably won’t like Orlando in the summer very much, as the heat and especially the humidity go practically off the charts. If all people concerned are very cold-blooded, this may be an option for you. The other downside is that people tend to come here despite the heat in the summer because that’s when their kids have their summer break from school.
What is Your Dream Vacation When You Have Won the Lottery?
For everyone that buys a ticket for a lottery draw anywhere in the world, the dream is always to win and win big. We all have things we would buy and stuff we want to do when we won the lottery and among that list is to take a dream vacation. But what are the types of dream vacation you could enjoy with all those millions in the bank?
Ultimate safari in Africa
Africa is the second largest continent in the world and takes up a massive 22% of the planet. That means there is a lot to see across it and the ultimate safari would include the most important sights. From scaling Mount Kilimanjaro to seeing Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World there are so many things to do. You can visit one of the oldest prehistoric sites in Olduvai Gorge or the larger unbroken volcanic caldera at Ngorongoro Crater. Then there’s the wildlife – elephants, giraffe, lions and so much more to see during the 29 day private tour across Southern Africa.
Jet tours with National Geographic
If you want to see the most amazing natural wonders, there’s no-one better to do it with than National Geographic experts and this is something you can do for just around $80,000 a person. This 24 day adventure takes you from the Iguacu Falls in Brazil to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia to Easter Island and lets you see the most amazing places in the world while learning about them from the ultimate experts.
Luxury Antarctica Cruise
For the adventure fans, there’s nowhere more fascinating that Antarctica and a luxury tour of the frozen continent is a great way to see the most amazing sights while still enjoying all the best conveniences. Spot the penguins and elephant seals who are unafraid of human visitors while seeing the amazing icebergs floating through the glasslike seas.
Silk Road private train
The Silk Road is associated with some of the most famous figures and events in history from Alexander the Great to Marco Polo. Now you can take a private train and explore the 4000-mile length of the ‘road’. Stop at historic spots, see amazing modern towns and villages and enjoy the amazing scenery while recreating a route that brought many of the luxuries we take for granted today from the Far East in the first place.
Meet Cole and Adela
We have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...
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