RtN153 is a challenge we are running from May to Sept – it will support the future of our event and will assist our tourism industry in difficult times. You can opt into that from 26 April when registration opens. » More Info «
You will start at the University of Aberdeen. This area is the most ancient part of the city, and it is worth taking some time to look at King’s College Chapel (completed in 1510) and the Cathedral Church of St Machars (which has been a place of worship since 580, with the current cathedral built between 1380 and 1520). If you are looking for something more contemporary, then visit the university library which was opened in 2012 and won prestigious British and Scottish architecture awards.
The first part of the cycle is entirely urban. You will cycle over the River Don at the new Don Crossing, which was completed in 2016 at a cost of £22.3m. You then pass through the residential areas of Danestone, Middleton and Bridge of Don, which together form the largest suburb in Europe. From the bridge you encounter a nasty 1.5 mile climb before finally hitting the countryside. But looks can be deceiving – you actually pass very close to Dyce (the centre of the oil and gas industry in the city) as well as Aberdeen International Airport and the newly opened Conference Centre.
When you cross the Aberdeen ring road at 5.4 miles, you will finally feel like you are cycling in farmland. The pretty countryside continues to the market town of Newmachar which was founded in 1609 as part of the Parish of St Machar’s Cathedral. From here you start heading due west, once again in agricultural land. You head steadily uphill, reaching the maximum elevation at the Hill of Middleton (mile 11). The route then gives your legs a breather, with a steady decent for the final seven miles, finishing in the centre of Inverurie.
Inverurie is the largest town in Aberdeenshire with a population of around 14,000, and is known locally as the Centre of the Garioch (pronounced Geery). The town sits on the River Ury, which joins the Don nearby, and was founded in 1308, though its first mention in royal charters isn’t until 1558. If outdoor history is your thing, then the Easter Aquhorthies stone circle dating back to the 3rd century BC is worth a visit, as is Pictish stone symbol known as the Brandsbutt Stone. There is an excellent range of shops and eateries in the town, as well as a regular farmers’ market. The largest livestock market in Scotland can be found just south of the town at Thainstone.
By clicking on the ‘play’ symbol on the graphic below you can see route map. The elevation profile of the ride can be seen via the Hills tab with files for use with a GPS a device also available for download. If you take any photos of the route that you’d like to share, please submit to firstname.lastname@example.org
Onward rides from Inverurie can be found here