25 November 2014.
A death-defying ride along Scotland’s Cuillin Range
In Scotland Adventure By Samantha Chong Pin It! These were probably the words running through extreme cyclist Danny Macaskill’s head when he biked the Isle of Skye’s notorious Cuillin Range.
The above video – streamed more than 12 million times since its debut on 2 October – showcases the professional athlete’s death-defying ride along the jagged mountain ridge.
It’s a feat that – for obvious reasons – not many people attempt. Scotland’s Cuillin Range is a dramatic and challenging ascent for most mountain climbers, let alone an adventurer navigating on two wheels. The 13km-long range is home to some 20 peaks, with the highest point reaching an intimidating 992m. The few winding trails that pepper the range are slippery and narrow.
And as winter nears, some trails require the use of ice-axes and crampons – not to mention a hefty dose of courage. But these challenging conditions did nothing to deter Macaskill, who hails from Dunvegan on the Isle of Skye. Perhaps the most famous stunt rider on the internet, Macaskill is good at what he does. His 12 years of practise are evident at the two-minute mark as he navigates the Cuillin’s steep, rocky ridges in a deceptively casual fashion.
Then at 4:51, he vaults off the edge of a cliff and nails the landing. Watching as Macaskill hurdles, jumps and finishes the film with a trick flip, you just might feel as though the rider and the bike are one. We don’t recommend that you follow exactly in Macaskill’s bike tracks, but well-qualified mountaineers can hike the Cuillin Range. Because of the mental and physical exertion required, climbing the ridge alone is suggested as a two-day trip, with one day used as a training day.
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