So today I woke up to the first proper bright sunny sky that promised to behave and stay dry!
I quietly but eagerly got into my bike gear, trying my best not to wake up and annoy the rain God ‘PissItDown’ and get away before he got up!
Friday the 13th starts off well!!! Woohoo!!!
(This changes later!)
I started packing everything I would need for my little adventure today:
Water bottle ✅
Battery pack ✅
List of places to go ✅
Lunch money (case I dropped my lunch again) ✅
I check the bike over and give the chain a little clean, lube and wipe! Great!!! Let’s get on the road!
My first stop today was Portstewart! I went down to see who was about and found no-one... damn!
I’ll get a few pictures and be on my way!
The V sitting proud with the Strap-On riding her!
This was at the main biker meet point in Portstewart promenade! Usually so busy in summer that you can’t get parked!
Close up of photo above...
The Strap-On sitting on the wall with Portstewart town in view.
Some idiot local that stood beside it to prove there was humans in the area!
This is from the other side of Portstewart. See the town view above and the cliffs on the left side. I’m up there this time.
That’s County Donegal in the background. We will be going over there on the morning route!
After I had took the required photos I decided now was a good time for ice cream!!!
Three double scoop cones and a large tub later and I farted that loud it sounded like a misfiring bike trying to start up!
I left Portstewart...
Next in my list of places to go was the lovely town on Portrush! The town of the NVM this year for those who have forgotten... I won’t shame you here but you know who you are!!! Lol.
I was trying to see where I could get a nice photo around here and decided that the harbour would do nicely.
The harbour mouth. Meant to be a no vehicle area but no-one said anything so I blasted on.
The harbour wall proudly displaying the Strap-Ons superior power! (Visible from all of Portrush here!)
An empty harbour. Won’t look as empty when you lot arrive lol.
The lifeboat. Just to the left of this photo is the little bar that I’m going to suggest first before moving onto another bar later that night.
Wide angle panoramic shot of the harbour.
Nothing much open in Portrush this early in the year. Picks up around Easter so I made my exit and headed on around the coast!
Ok spoiler alert here!!!
The next few photos are parts of the NVM afternoon route. If you don’t want to see then stop reading now... but you will miss the bikini girls...
Ok now that everything is in order, our trip continues!
I leave Portrush and head east towards Ballycastle.
Such a beautiful road and an amazingly dry day and what do I get stuck behind...?
Yep!!! A tour bus!!!
I would have recorded this on my camera and posted it but I’m sure you all didn’t want to hear me swearing for 20mins...
Frustrated I pull in and stop for a break. I’ve made it 10 miles total now...
Tiring work this biker malarkey!
Although another photo op?
A distant shot of Portrush there and some lovely coastline.
These are The Skerries. A bird sanctuary that is exactly 1 mile out from where I was standing.
I relax for 10 mins...
By this stage I figured the tour bus is long gone and I can head on round to my next stop!
The Giants Causeway!!!
They put me to work...
This actually is me btw dressed up as Finn McCool (the blonde) and my friend Matthew as Benandonner (Scottish giant)
The entrance to the visitors centre of the Causeway. I didn’t have time today to go inside. But those of you that are National Trust members get in free. If there is enough of you that want to go in let me know and I’ll sort out a group discount. 15 people or more (includes NT members too that get in free)
That idiot is following me...
Next on my list was Dunseverick Castle.
We won’t go past here on the route unless people want to. But it would be a 5 mins stop as it’s a mile or two off the GC.
It was a small castle but still a castle in its day lol.
The Strap-On taking a back seat in this shot.
Yes I took a picture of the sign so I could remember how to spell it... Irish names and all that lol.
Resting on the wall before heading off again.
Too sunny to take off the sunglasses visor. Not often I get to say that here!
This next place was just a rest parking area that I stopped for the view at.
No name just a little viewpoint.
That’s actually Carrack-a-rede rope bridge just above the Strap-On there. Another NT site.
If you do visit it sometime then bring hiking shoes. Trust me you’ll need them! Ask Shandy!
Ok onwards and upwards!
With the sun in the sky and the breeze on my face I rode on to continue my Strap-On adventure! Still aiming for Ballycastle...
I arrive at the GoT site “The Iron Islands”!!!
Ballintoy Harbour as the locals call it!
Hard to read that sign but we will stop here for a little break too!
5 points to whoever can name that island in the background?
Yup it’s Rathlin Island!!!
(Points cannot he traded for anything. Points have no cash value)
Just a view from the viewpoint. That’s Castlerock in the background with Mussenden Temple on the cliff edge. We pass that on the morning route.
Getting excited yet?
This guy just won’t leave me alone... with that daft look on his face! Lol.
Other side of the harbour.
Sorry about the sun. Hard to see the screen too.
Btw sun is booked for June!
I didn’t get a photo of them but three woman ambushed me looking for a “secret beach”
I sadly told them that’s near Castlerock and not Ballintoy as they had been told. The opposite direction to where I was going otherwise I would have gladly escorted them to it!!!
Ok where to next...?
Oh yes!!! Ballycastle!!!
I leave the delights of Ballintoy and keep heading East.
I stopped to take a photo of one of the fastest parts of our route. A long straight that has many bumps and dips in it. Easily a 100-110mph stretch that the V handles well... I mean a good 60mph road for any police reading this... Oldplodder!!!
Will I ever reach Ballycastle???
Read on to find out in part two!!!
Ok part two!!!
I finally reach Ballycastle and I’m starving!
I pull up at the main biker meet area and park up. Again I’m the only biker about... what’s going on???
Why aren’t they out enjoying this first sunny day???
I’ll get food and see if anyone shows up!!!
Since he followed me here, he bought me a burger! Tried to kill me with it too but that’s another story!
This is Morton’s Chippy in Ballycastle! Famous for its queues out the door. Many people on weekends spend 2-3 hours waiting to just get in the door!
I highly recommend this chippy if you ever get the chance to go to it!
I got there at opening time so I skipped the massive queues today.
The biker wall... we all sit here and chat on Sunday's!
Another Strap-On photo with my V.
Damn it looks good! Needs a wash but still looks good!
As I type this I realise I was going to wash it tonight but it’s now dark... I’ll do it tomorrow lol.
After I choked down the wrong burger and said bye to the 4 bikers that did show up. I debated riding home or continuing on?
Screw it I'm riding on!!!
So I leave Ballycastle and again head East!
The song in my Helmet blaring out GO WEST!!!
I skip the song...
As I head out further along the coast road, I turn off towards Cushendun!
I’m only showing you this view because we will be coming up this road instead of going down it like I am here. At the bottom of this hill are some very nice, tight... hairpins! (now now!!!) that you all will enjoy!
Mk1 owners I have a different route for you’s that doesn’t involve such a strenuous load on the bikes. Can’t be dealing with break downs here lol.
Level ground and a straight road... in case you need to push them back! How nice am I to think of you lot! Lol.
Cushendun is the next town and I stop to see the town goat! WD???
The statue presented to the town.
For those that need a close up to read it lol.
A lovely little harbour area that was used in GoT too.
The V with the Town Goat. It’s actually on a rope but can walk as far as the V there. It’s very friendly and allows people near it.
Oh what’s that???
It’s not food...
I would have got closer but honestly it smelled like ClubPenguins ass! Sorry mate!
Time to go!!!
I ride on around the coast headed this time for Larne!
Cushendall I pass through with ease. Nothing exciting there.
Carnlough too! But this is where my ride runs short!
Road ahead closed due to landslide!
Right boys get that cleared before June!!! Don’t you know I have a VIP group of bikers coming over and I need this damn road!!!
I cut across to Broughshane and Ballymena and head home!
Boring ride home...
A good day all in all and I hope you enjoy the photos. I didn’t want to take too many as I want you all to experience it properly! These are just meant as a teaser to peak your interest and keep you going til June!
I can’t wait til you all come over and enjoy a few pints and these great roads.
Although it did stay dry, the road being closed did annoy me a little as I wanted more photos. Next time though!!!
Lastly I also took a few snaps of the Strap-On at Carrick Dhu where a few of you are staying.
PS: for those who did read on... here’s your bikini girls shot!