Rhynie to Alford is not too far …but this route has the minor complication of going right over the top of one of Aberdeenshire’s classic cycling hills – The Suie!
The first thing to deal with is a rather smaller climb out of Rhynie over the neighbouring village of Clatt. It’s not far out of Clatt where a glance to the right shows a road cutting up into a hillside and you can think ‘surely that’s not where we are going’? Guess what!!
There is no denying this is one of the toughest climbs in the area. It is just under a mile long and it hurts! There is a nasty right hand bend half-way up so the climb splits nicely into two halves – firstly get to the bend and secondly keep going after the bend. What you cannot do here is keep your head down as you reach the summit as there are spactacular views, mostly back over your right shoulder. It’s a beautiful spot and provided you have visited the Suie when it does not have it’s head in the low lying clouds, its a photo opportunity or just a pause to admire the best of Aberdeenshire.
The way down is of course much more straightforward. It has the potential for a very quick descent, so please take care and certainly be aware that you will be slowing down to a near stop to take a 90 degree left hand corner at the bottom. When we say the bottom, that’s the end of the rapid descent, but it’s not quite over as the road descends futher past the church at Tullynessle -it’s steadily downhill here and can make for pretty quick progress. There are some lovely views out to to Donside.
The very final section after the school on your right is to the small village of Montgarrie, across the River Don and into Alford. The interactive map below shows the route (press play if you can’t see it). Once you have clicked into the map it will show an option for MENU on the top right corner. This menu will provide a link to elevation profile (Hills), download of files for use on GPS devices and the opportunity to add photos or comments.
After reaching Alford, onward rides can be found on the Alford page here