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The Capital Trail

Individual Mountain Bike Time Trial

2017 Group Start

The Tide Cafe - 56 King's Rd, Edinburgh EX15 1DX

Online Sale Ended


The Capital Trail is a bikepacking experience/adventure for like-minded cyclists, an Individual Mountain Bike Time Trial, the perfect challenge for (very) experienced mountain bikers/bikepackers. Voted by as 'Best New Trail' in 2015 and with ca. 6000m of climbing the Capital Trail is a real challenge, but offers you an amazing variety of singletrack, Land Rover tracks, forest roads and quite country lanes. In short, it is the very best Scotland's South has got to offer, with most of the trails ridable in dry conditions. Everyone is responsible for their own thing and you must stick to the rules below. We are simply starting at the same spot at the same time after a nice breakfast, and your final time will be published afterwards. You will also receive some useful guidance before the ride per email, the fee covers the breakfast at the Tide Cafe before the ride, photography/filming and uploading your finishing time on the website.

The route starts and finishes at The Tide Cafe on Portobello Beach and features the beautiful Firth of Forth coastline, the River Esk, Carberry Hill, the Winton Estate and the Pencaitland Railway Path, Saltoun Big Woods, the quiet and scenic country lanes of East Lothian, Lammer Law, the Southern Upland Way, Thirlestane Castle, Melrose Abbey, the River Tweed, the Borders and Abbey Way, the Three Brethren, the 7Stanes trails at Innerleithen and Peebles, Kirkhope Law, the Cross Borders Drove Road, the Meldons and Pentland Hills. And to finish, the Capital Trail will offer you some views on Edinburgh you might have not experienced before. Surprise yourself!

Here's feedback from riders:

'I loved the varied terrain; great distance; huge ascent; ease of re-supply; simple-no fuss, friendly small numbers and I needed to navigate!'

'It's an absolutely superb route'

'Comprehensive and varied terrain. Great mix. Need some good legs!'

'Besides the pure constant stimulation of the very varied trails selected, was the constant anxious feeling that you might miss your next turn down the next tasty trail! I liked this, it really kept you on your toes!'

You need to have a working GPS for the ride, as the route will only be supplied per GPX, at least one week before the event. It's approximately 250km long and contains about 5500m of climbing. Entries will be open until the total number of registrations reaches 100, or until 28 May. We are operating on a first come first serve basis.

Find out more at

The Rules

  1. You must stick to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. Respect the landowner's properties, shut all gates, don't leave any rubbish and leave all livestock and wildlife undisturbed.
  2. Complete the entire route, under your own power - no drafting.
  3. Be completely self-supported throughout the ride - absolutely no support crews, absolutely no gear sharing. You can, however, ride as part of a small group of friends, as long as you are equipped to ride the entire route on your own (but no friends and family following the ride, effectively acting as a sag-wagon).
  4. Only use commercial services that are available to all challengers - no private resupply, no private lodging.
  5. If you have to leave the route, you must rejoin it at the exactly same spot.No caches of any kind.
  6. No pre-arranged support, which means before you begin your ride - e.g. booking a B&B, arranging to meet a vehicle.
  7. No travel by any motorised means during your ride - by all means do so if necessary, but understand if you do your attempt is over.
  8. Gear - nothing required, nothing prohibited.

You agree that you accept the rules above when paying the fee. You agree that you will release the organisers from any and all responsibility of liability for injuries or damages or to any other person. You agree not to make a claim against or sue this organiser for injuries or damages relating to this event.

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