I'm not going to write a lengthy article tonight about the pros and cons of cycling on Islay. In my opinion there are only pros unless gale force winds, horizontal rain and slippery roads are spoiling the fun, and being an island near the Atlantic Ocean with nothing but nasty weather systems between Islay and Canada this can be quite often the case, especially in winter. Fortunately most tourists come to Islay in seasons when the weather is better and more "cyclist friendly". The locals however, organised in the Velo Club 'd Ardbeg, have to deal with the harsh winter conditions.
It's good to know that when you're planning to take your bike to Islay that there are a few people involved in cycling and repairs on Islay. I've said it before and will probably say it again sometime, when I think about cycling in Islay I think of brian palmer who runs the washingmachinepost and made cycling on Islay popular for people from other parts of the world. There is Jez Hastings, cycling fanatic and Islay's Wilderness Guide, who give cycling, touring and wildlife a different meaning and the both of them, brian and Jez, are also teaching the kids on Islay how to use their bikes. They do so by running a weekly class in Port Charlotte called the Port Mor Wheelers.
There is another name I'd like to connect with cycling although others might know him as someone who likes to run long distances and for being an artist too. His name is Jim Lutomski from Port Ellen and Jim runs a bike shop, until recently at Columba Hall. Jim recently moved to another building and he is now based at Clearwater Marine behind the White Hart hotel, also in Port Ellen. Besides making a move of location he also changed websites. His wife Lesly is web designer and she created a new site for Jim under the name www.islaycycles.co.uk. On his website you can read that Jim offers the following services:
- quality cycles for hire in a range to suit your needs
- special deals for families with young children: just contact me for details
- new and re-cycled bikes for sale
- cycle repair service, especially for those unexpected emergencies
- guided cycle tours of Islay to suit a range of abilities and interests: art lessons included for those who'd like to try!
I can recommend a visit to Jim's new website where you an read more about his cycle business. You can also contact Jim by telephone on 07760 196 592 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.