Touring: Cairngorms and West highlands with the MBO UK forum - Mercedes-Benz Forum

 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 02:33 PM Thread Starter
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Touring: Cairngorms and West highlands with the MBO UK forum

Well folks (at Noodles request), here is the forum tour....

We started off following the route I planned but in Reverse.

Here is day one

https://maps.google.co.uk/maps?saddr...mra=ls&t=m&z=8

The route tackled the legendary Dukes pass. Here my C class being nimble came into its own swinging from Apex to Apex and creating a sizable gap over the others.

From here, a more sedate pace was tackled. This part of the journey takes you though west Perthshire and over the Sma Glen. Its a quiet and undiscovered driving nirvana that the bikers haven't thankfully sniffed out.

Anyway, after a delightful lunch at the East Haugh Hotel nr Pitlochary, we aimed the cars into the Cairngorms and for Braemar. More driving Nirvana was reached with the devils Elbow and the Lecht.

And we are a socialble bunch


DSC_0298 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Unfortunately as we stopped a bus passed us.


DSC_0301 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

My Peashooter is bloody strong and blasted past it, and Seans beautiful CLS55 did the same. As did Mr Speed and corned and actually everyone gunned it passed. What a magnficent sight, all these rusty and unreliable cars with their massochistic owners celebrating this by a drive over some of the best roads in the world.

The Lecht was dead and some real driving was done. My cars poise, agility and control compared to my E class was a revelation and an utter joy to behold. Feck the rust, this was a proper driving experience.

The weather was also decent and without incriminating myself, I really had a progressive drive with Sean behind me in his CLS55 until it was time for him to pass. This car makes an apocalyptic noise and this time last year, thanks to Seans generosity, I had the priviledge of making that noise with my right foot. Anyway, we drew into Ullapool well ahead of the others.

Some snaps


DSC_0307 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr


DSC_0308 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

The weather wasn't great, but the road was, and my skinnier tyres meant I felt quite planted on the road, even at the NSL of 60mph. The E class with the wider wheels wasn't as good.

Anyway, we all dined and were merry in the Seaforth pub. What fun, you, your forum mates all having fun in their cars.

The next part of the route the next day was this

https://maps.google.co.uk/maps?saddr...mra=ls&t=m&z=8

The drive from Ullapool the Gairloch is great. The others went ahead, I was feeling sedate and a bit skint so cruised along.

I stopped at Gruinard, here IIRC is the Anthrax Island where this was tested in WWII. Its still uninhabitable


DSC_0012 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I also like the view at Loch Ewe Nr Altbea.


DSC_0015 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

In the WWII a lot of naval ships were hidden here so Jerry couldn't destroy them. Now we come back in the third Reichs staff cars, how times change and how the residents here of yesteryear would turn in their graves at the prospect of this. It must be strange as here is so isolated, but their efforts in the war should not go under estimated.

You really can see this from the road.


DSC_0023 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Up this way was always the annual famity holiday when I was a small lad, I always vowed I'd come back as my old man always seemed to have fun blasting us along here in his motor. I used to begrudge his high speed as my lunch would be disturbed, but I don't blame him now, this is proper fun....

Passed Gairloch I stopped to take this image


DSC_0311 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I had expected the others to catch up, but they hadn't. I sensed problems but drove on, and I got the call that Sean had picked up a rock and injured a tyre. Its easily done on these roads. Big cars can suffer. Its why I have the skip.

We waited on Sean at the side of Loch Maree


DSC_0031 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Being a Sunday getting a new tyre was tricky, but we sedately drove to John R Weir in Inverness to see if they could help. They couldn't have been better, they gave us contacts to try as its an odd tyre and they didn't carry the tyre needed to fit Seans wheel. Really well done and its sad to see them fall under the Arnold Shark empire. John R Weir make a great ambassador for the Mercedes marque and provide a level of care and service that goes the extra mile. In short, they care, and they try.

Seans car did not get worse, so we soldier on to Aviemore, where again it did not get worse. We ate at the Roos Leap and this is a proper big fat man feed. Highly recommended.

Sean and trapperjohn went back to Glasgow via the A9 as the next part of the route was twisty and would put the tyre at higher temps and risk of blowing out. Johns a top man for supporting Sean morally and following in case of the worst.

We went down the A86 at stopped at Laggan


DSC_0038 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I picked up an injury getting this picture, so you all better love it. I slipped on a rock, back is agony and I smacked my arm off the rock breaking the fall. I was able to drive but am stuggling to type this and probably have made errors in spelling and grammar as my wirsts and fore arm are sore.

At the other end of the Loch the view is immesne


DSC_0324 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

The dam is something else


DSC_0319 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Keith led the way to Ft William, we stopped for coffee, sat in his big E class had a good bye chat. I went into the pub attached to the premier inn in search of ice for the fecked arm. They were helpful and let the pain subside, and then I set off. The C class was a soothing companion for what was an uncomfortable drive, and its every bit the Mercedes it purports to be, just with added bite for the fun stuff. What a brilliant car


DSC_0326 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

And cheap on the fuel too...

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 03:00 PM
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Methinks I am going to have book some airline tickets and get back over there soon.

Those are stunning photos.

I must be going through a mid life crisis.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Let us know if you do, a few of us forum members from UK forums would be happy to meet you/have dinner/chat and discuss routes etc

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 03:08 PM
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I was already planning to do that.

I would be in Weybridge, Surrey for a few days first catching up with family and friends and then on my way up north.
Realistically it would be a trip for the summer of 2014. This summer we are going all over the US looking at universities for my daughter.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Noodles View Post
I was already planning to do that.

I would be in Weybridge, Surrey for a few days first catching up with family and friends and then on my way up north.
Realistically it would be a trip for the summer of 2014. This summer we are going all over the US looking at universities for my daughter.
If you are in Weybridge go to Mercedes world....

F1 car art display


DSC_0103 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Automotive porn


DSC_0091 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 03:43 PM
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Funny you mention that.

My neighbor's father worked for McLaren and before F1 shops became locked down like embassy buildings we would run all over the McLaren shops.

I am planning to see the F1 car art display. F1 is in my DNA. It keeps following me around. I did some work for the Arrows team in the marketing dept. When I worked for American Honda I helped David Hobbs set up his parts and service dept at his Honda dealership which was a mile from my old house before we bought a horse farm out in the country.

Justin Bell and I meet up at Sebring when I can get there for the 12 hour race. We both drove the GT3 911 stabled by Larry Schumacher back in the very late 90s.
I did print ads that appeared in the now defunct Indy Car Magazine and last year there were 3 former F1 drivers in Indy Cars. This year it is just Sato and Justin Wilson. Still both very fast drivers.
This stuff literally fell in my lap, but I am not complaining. I feel blessed to be able to indulge my love for motorsports and get paid for it.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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Sounds like you've had a cracking career. If you have any pics/further stories, post them up, or if you have, send me the thread links.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2013, 04:00 PM
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More lucky than cracking. Just happened to be in the right time at the right place.

The magazine pics/ads/articles are are backed up on optical discs I still have to unpack.

Here is a link to Some of the Schumacher Racing cars. What it does not show is that Larry ran two cars some years and the second cars are not listed on this link. I am looking for more.
Larry Schumacher's cars - Photo Gallery - Racing Sports Cars
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-02-2013, 02:49 AM Thread Starter
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Enjoyed that, thanks seeing GT1s is always a treat and the images are great

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