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NC500 biker gets trip cut short after motorhome incident on Wester Ross single-track road

By Iona M.J. MacDonald

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Sharon and her motorbike on the NC500 en route to Applecross before the incident.
Sharon and her motorbike on the NC500 en route to Applecross before the incident.

AN NC500 motorcyclist cut her trip short after a motorhome “insisted on trying to squeeze past” on single-track road - knocking her off in the process.

Sharon Makinson was on day one of her NC500 adventure, when it was cut short due to a motorhome driver with “no common sense”.

The Durham motorcyclist was travelling from Inverness to Poolewe via Applecross.


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Sharon said: “I wasn’t far from Applecross when I came round a corner and a motorhome was coming towards me. You can’t reverse on a bike, but rather than them reversing to the passing place 20ft behind them, the driver continued and insisted on trying to squeeze past me.

“I was stationary, but he clipped the box on the back of my bike, knocking me off and into the verge. It was four young lads in the motorhome, who did stop and lift the bike up off me.

“One of the guys said ‘I only clipped the box on your bike’, without any awareness that just a nudge from a vehicle that size can knock you flat. I turned around to pick something up, and when I turned back they had gone!

“I don’t think they realise how heavy and wide motorbikes are. You’re half the width of a car with full luggage on, and they are a really heavy machine to lift.”

Explaining the kindness of fellow motorcyclists, Sharon said: “A couple of bikers stopped and moved my bike into a safe place further up, and stayed with me until I was stable enough to get back on the bike and continue riding.

“Unfortunately, I couldn’t continue with the trip after that because I couldn’t put enough weight on my leg.”

Many cyclists and bikers on the NC500 route have reported similar issues as Sharon, with larger vehicles often not allowing enough space on the roads.

“That was actually the second incident that day where a motorhome tried to squeeze past me.” said Sharon. “Generally, I found that the majority of people were quite courteous and friendly… but with some of them there’s just no common sense.

“The incident won’t stop me from coming back… its been on my to-do list for a long time. I don’t know if I will be on the bike, or if I will do it with my partner in the car instead - but it’s not going to prevent me.

Sharon's motorbike.
Sharon's motorbike.

“I have friends who did the NC500 route in their campervan, who said they had several run-ins with other drivers not stopping in passing places. Lots of people just don’t know how to use them… If you see someone coming in the distance, pull in and let them past!”

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