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Pete Scullion continues his series about riding and trying to keep up with pro riders he admires. This time it’s enduro racer-turned-adventurer, Jamie Nicoll.

A battleship-grey day in Boat of Garten, just north of Aviemore in the Cairngorms National Park, is where I’m offered a handshake by Jamie Nicoll. Another in the long line of Kiwi pinners who seem to allow their riding to do the vast majority of the talking.

This is the first time riding in this part of Scotland for both of us – I get the feeling that Jamie is happy pretty much anywhere, especially if it’s a venture into the somewhat unknown. Our base for these next few days is The Boat Hotel in the village, and along with Stefanus Stahl from, we’re to be shown around by owner of Ride Cairngorm, the local bike shop, and master of all trades Nash Masson.

The plan is simple, get out on the bikes, see what the Cairngorms can offer and miss the worst of the weather, of which there is a fair amount forecast. With a quarter of our party battling the very familiar phenomenon of delayed flights, we raid the most excellent post office in Boat of Garten for supplies before heading out for a shakedown ride.

A strong coffee from the Gashouse Café, the other string in the Ride Cairngorm bow, and it’s obvious that Jamie is a strong believer that the flat white is the national drink of New Zealand, maybe even rising to some sort of religious importance, certainly going by the looks given when a different coffee is ordered.

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About Singletrack

Editorial: Old Friends UK Adventure: Ochils the Noo Classic Ride: All Weather Lake District Column: Jason Miles International Adventure: Revelstoked Tech: When Did It All Get Good? Editors’ Choice 2019 Pete’s Pros: Jamie Nicholl Bike Test: Bling Bikes Still Going: Lucky Shorts International Adventure: Davos On The Cheap Interview: David Cachon International Adventure: Greek Highland Hopping Last Word: Unhealthy Obsession