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    A family bike ride around Loch Leven

    Taken from the Blazing Saddles Column in the Tayside Courier Weekend Supplement 12,5.12

    Scot Tares enjoys a family day out on two-wheels

    “Bicycles have no walls”Paul Cornish

    Cycling is an activity that does not discriminate against age and this makes it the ideal activity for a family day out. Kids of all ages love the sense of freedom and adventure and the adults accompanying them can, usually, just about keep up. From as soon as my children were born we would take them out in a twin trailer, but very soon they were riding their own bikes. One of my first articles for the Courier was extolling the virtues of “balance bikes” and I can’t praise them enough as they have allowed both our children, from the age of three, to progress onto pedal bikes, skipping the phase of stabilisers. This has allowed us to go on big camping adventures into the Cairngorms and access places that would be difficult if we expected our young children to walk.

    Already a family favourite in the Tares household and very popular with lots of cyclists and walkers across Courier country, the Loch Leven Heritage Trail in Kinross is an ideal venue to cycle with families as the trails are flat and well surfaced and suitable for all abilities of cyclist, from the youngest to the oldest. Along the way there are interpretive boards describing the wealth of historical and natural attractions around the loch. There are also plenty of beautifully carved benches and nature hides to stop and rest at and refreshments can be found at several cafes dotted around the route. When we go we like to make an adventure of it for our young children and fill backpacks with food and drinks, so we can stop and have impromptu picnics; cycling can be thirsty work and regular stops for snacks are a great way to keep energy levels and enthusiasm high. The trail, which is in a National Nature Reserve, has a fantastic website which has downloadable maps of the full 12.5km loch-side trail broken down into sections, and there is even a “kids fun page” full of activity sheets.

    Scot Tares

    Route: Loch Leven Heritage Trail, Kinross
    Grade: Suitable for all abilities
    Distance:7.8miles/ 12.5km
    Start/ finish:Kinross Pier Visitor Centre – OS 1:50,000 Map 58 NO123016There are several different starting points, so it is worth checking the Loch Leven Heritage Trail website for further details.



    Copyright DC Thompson 2012