Absolutely brilliant road, definitely one of the highlights of my Scotland trip.
We recently rode the Applecross pass on a biking trip around the Highlands and Skye. There was a howling gale which made for a tricky ride at times and angry skies, but it was a brilliant experience, with beautiful views despite the cloud and a mix of gentler corners and more difficult hairpins. After the descent we took the coastal route back. The rain started driving in then, but the coastal route was also twisty enough to keep us on our toes, despite the lack of wind protection. I was on a BMW GS650, after my Triumph broke down and although it was a new ride for me it handled superbly. The bike tractored on through gravel and uneven surfaces as if it was made for this type of terrain. At the pub after the descent we had delicious fresh fish, peas and chips, plus met bikers from Holland, Germany and Canada all with massive smiles on their faces. This road was one of the many amazing roads across this part of Scotland - will definitely be returning to do it again (maybe in the sunshine next time).
Has to be done at least once in your motorcycling life! Just to add to the above, Applecross now has a "community fuel pump" thanks to pressure from the locals. It's a bit more expensive than the big chains but the money goes into the community there, so be a good tourist and top-up a bit while your there!
We rode this route on 20th june this year for the first time. Wow, what a road one of the best roads I have ridden. there are some alpine style hairpins to keep your mind on the road but be careful because you will try to look at the scenery as well as ride. we found ourselvesw stopping constantly just to take in the views. The pub in Applecross does fantastic Roll mop herring. Must do this again and would like to stop overnight at the pub. If you continue along the coast road round the whole peninsula the views get even better.I think the fact that we had glorious sunshine helped but I cannot recomend this route highly enough.
Beallach Na Ba- the cattle pass.
People come from all over to try out this road. It is single track with passing places. Cars tend not to stop for bikers, thinking we steer off the road. That may be, but some spots have a good 6 inch drop.
Applecross could only be reached by boat until this road was constructed in the early 20th century, so the island culture remains. This means you cant fill up in Applecross on Sundays, so make sure you fill up in Loch Carron, even on weekdays.
The initial climb has a few twisties and the road is a little wider here, and gives you a taste of what si to come. the road turns to the left, and you get a glimpse of the mountains. Then you can see a fair way ahead, but it gets narrow here. Fastest Ive been here is 60. Then come the hairpins (oh yes!) Snow at this point in april is not uncommon, and these are proper hairpins. Once clear a short section of blind corners, and youre at the top! There is a car park with a viewpoint and ona clear day... wow. Even on a misty day (weather is very unpredictable here) it lends teh mountains with a certain majesty. The descent to applecross has one or two open sections, some more tight tight corners, and youll find yourself back at sea level in Applecross.
There is petrol here Monday to Saturday. You can get cash at the campsite, (and you can stay there too). There is a general store. The Applecross Inn does accomodation, beer and whiskey and very good langoustines. The sea over to Skye is a naval torpedoe range, so is closed to commercial fishermen, but not to local fishermen. The prawns grow to be HUGE, and they serve them at the Inn. Youve got to try them.
Turn right from the Inn and follow the road up to Applecross house and go to the walled garden. They do GREAT food here, and do an excellent spread for an evening meal, and idycllic surroundings.
Further up the road, a B&B is planned, and should be running very soon now.
Did this route in a car. Not always easy to give way, so watch the car drivers especially on the pass itself. Going back to do it on the bike!
Not for speed-freaks. This is one for taking it easy and soaking up the view over towards Skye. The road is narrow (with passing places?? I cant remember!) and not well surfaced, but will leave a smile on your face. The perfect way to take a break from a fast tour and see some of the best vews around.
As some of the previous reviews have stated this is a must do road for all bikers at least once, has a bit of eveything to keep your interest up. Scenery is outstanding but the route itself can seem daunting for novice or nervous riders. A few very tight bends and although very remote and rural, well travelled full of bikes, bicycles and campervans/caravans, so can be quite busy. Most drivers will give way for the bikes to pass and obey the passing places but dont take it for granted! Mid week on a clear day to get the best of the road, an experience not to forget.Getting to Applecross feels like you have just completed a great expedition, great feeling. Fully luggaged sports bikes - dont be too proud to put your feet down on a couple of the bends and watch for loose gravel. Plenty of photo opportunities on a clear day and usually plenty other bikes to meet up with.
A must do. As said the first bits out of Lochcarron are just fantastic - see how much speed you really can carry on some of those bends. The Bealach Na Ba (the pass over to Applecross) is difficult, tight, absorbing riding on poor surface with big drops - not for the timid! Be warned - there is one petrol fill at Applecross, run from the one shop - closes at 5.30 Saturday and does NOT under any circumstance open on Sunday. Nearest gas outside Applecross is about 25 miles away, so be prepared.
A tricky road, lots of tight corners and some loose gravel at edge of some of the corners. Taken with care and at the right speed its relatively safe, with decent crash-barriers at most dangerous sections, although no good if you hit them at speed and fly off bike and over them! When i road up there in early August 2007 the weather was not very good and visibility poor. Had a great lunch in the Applecross Inn, although the burger they gave me was HUGE, so i only ate 2/3 of it.
Travelled from Fortwilliam to Applecross last May on a truly exceptional day, not a cloud in the sky. The views are magnificent and the road surface was fantastic compared to some of the roads here in Ireland. We met lovely people and I have to say it is something you all should do. You will realise how lucky you are to experience something that "cagers" can't even imagine. You have to stop though just to take it all in. Fantastic...
Having traversed this route on many occasions I can only confirm all that other contributors have said, on your first visit in good weather the route is mind blowing, the accomodation at the Hotel superb the campsite being only a stagger away. Combining this route with a sweeping return to civilization via Sheildaig and Torridon ranks as my favourite route, who needs the continent when we have roads like this on our doorstep.
We went over to Applecross in Oct 05. Its usualy brilliant but this time it was raining and misty,we went anyway but it was a bit scary as vis was down to about5' and I know whats around the bends. So if your new to the area and its misty up there,try again another day if your not a confident rider,
This route has to be done by everyone at some time, a bit 'nadgery' in places, but worth going for the views alone, not to mention the lobster sarnies at The Applecross Inn. The first bend out of Lochcarron is worth doing a few times to get the tyres warm. For the 'happy campers' amongst you their is also a good camp site at Applecross. Probably be their at some time next summer.
This is the highest classified road in Britian with spectacular views from the summit.From Lochcarron head west through Kishorn to the junction at Tornapress,turn left and start heading up the hill,dont take the left turn down to the old oil rig construction yard about a mile along the road.The road starts to climb from here for the next 6 miles,its all single track with some nasty blind corners but also some lovely sweepy bends.there is a good spot to stop for pics on a sweeping right hand bend above the oil rig yard with a great view over Loch Kishorn to Plockton and the Skye bridge.continue climbing up to the hairpin bends,can be tricky early in the year because of gravel and muck left on the road after the winter.Stop at the top hairpin and look back down the corrie at the view.Its about another mile to the summit with a big stopping place,if its a clear day the views are fantastic accross the inner sound to Raasay and Rona,south to Rhum and Eigg and all the way north to Lewis.From here on its down hill all the way to Applecross for 6 miles,again watch some of the corners for gravel and one nasty open left hand bend about half way down with an adverse camber which has caught out a few bikers.When you get back down to sea level you can turn left for the Applecross Inn ,good food and biker friendly,there is also a shop and prtrol station or you can go right and take the coast road round to Sheidaig to complete the loop.there are some spectacular views of the Torridon mountains,loch Torridon and loch Sheildaig.The road is quite demanding in places but well worth the efort but try to pick a clear day to take advantage of the fantastic views.