I wanted to run on another new route and one that I could run on a Beach to make the most of the 'tropical' weather we had last week. So I drove down to the Ayrshire coastal village of Maidens. As luck would have it the tide had begun to turn, and as the baltic water began to pull back from the shore it revealled a long wide stretch of firm, runable, sand. Already the changing tide had brought out a few horseriders, who were galloping up and down the beach. I ran north and soon left the beach to climb some wooden steps into the grounds of Culzean Castle. The path ran high above the cliffs overlooking the sea. I took a path down onto a gravelly section of beach and was under the cliffs where the Castle sat. I climbed the stairs to the manicured gardens and ran on to the visitor centre. I headed up a road, passing the car park at the deer park, and turned up to run behind the walled gardens. Without knowing where I would end up I ran up and down a few hills, roads and tracks, eventually reaching the Swan Pond. I had an ice cream here and ran my return route back along the virtually empty beach.
I headed to Erskine Sports Centre and ran over the Erskine bridge up to Loch Humphrey on the Kilpatricks. As I ran up the hill side 'road' I had to divert just after the Cattle grid as the road was closed for repairs. The diversion was steeper than the road up the hillside. However, I found it far more enjoyable. I followed a faint path up to the cairn on the 'Slacks' and then over and down to Loch Humphrey. The return route was on another path diversion.
With a few weeks to go until the Highland Fling race, it seems my prep, so far, has been going to plan. Hopefully between now and then this continues. Bring it!