Video: Chance Encounter with King Charles While Riding in Scotland

Sep 21, 2023 at 3:20
by Deviate Cycles  

Words: Deviate

Over the past 24 hours, McTrail Rider's video that features a chance encounter with King Charles has been picked up by the global media. In the video you see him alongside Deviate co-owner Ben Jones and MTB Guide Louise Haggarty having a chat with the King as he is out walking in the Balmoral Estate.

bigquotesWe were staying at Gelder Shiel which is one of the royal bothies attached to the Balmoral Estate. These are trails I've ridden many times before having grown up in the area and we were up there to capture footage of the incredible riding in this area to share with McTrail's followers. We certainly didn't think we'd be bumping into any royalty and were humbled that he took the time to chat to us. He took a genuine interest in where we were riding and clearly took a lot of pride in the upkeep of the area." - Ben Jones, Deviate Co-Owner.

Author Info:
deviatecycles avatar

Member since Nov 22, 2017
15 articles

  • 100 3
 Think he can afford at Yeti?
  • 29 11
 Maybe if he dips into that suitcase full of cash that he brought back from Qatar last year...
  • 8 2
 Well, no matter what he rides, I think you can just about make out a Royal Racing jersey under the Barbor jacket.
  • 1 6
flag nickfranko (Sep 21, 2023 at 21:23) (Below Threshold)
 Long live the queen.
  • 78 12
 World's richest welfare family
  • 34 4
 I thought Old Dirty Bastard was the richest person on welfare.
  • 71 79
flag iian (Sep 21, 2023 at 9:08) (Below Threshold)
 They contribute more than they cost. Plus the royal family gives exposure to a ton of charities. I'm no royalist, but they do good work.
  • 63 28
 @iian: Not true. A myth propagated by the royal family to justify their parasitic lifestyle. I suggest you look at's site if you want to learn more about how much the royals cost the British public and how little they contribute. Up the republic!
  • 23 5
 @Malky79: I think we should aim to wind it all up in 2066, A thousand years since William I seems like enough and a good point to stop, enough time for the ones who've been bred for it to have a bit of a go or be re-trained. Then we can open up the palaces etc to tourists more and I'm sure we'll do better or at least break-even.
  • 16 5
 @Malky79: The irony of Charlie complaining about the blood sucking midgies was not lost on me.
Sounded nice enough on the vid, but then you'd hope all those jewels, money and land would make him happy.
  • 22 22
 @Malky79: not as much as Scotland under kranky costs the UK....
  • 2 9
flag puukkopedro (Sep 21, 2023 at 10:09) (Below Threshold)
 @G-Sport: the irony of using William as your reference! Or is that just ignorance?
  • 12 0
 @puukkopedro: I do believe he is referring to King William the First, also known as William the Conqueror who took the throne in 1066. Also known as William the Bastard.
  • 4 0
 @PHX77: Ha ha ha! Awesome! RIP ODB
  • 17 17
 @iian: you might want a napkin, you know to wipe the boot polish off your mouth
  • 5 18
flag gouldelliott (Sep 21, 2023 at 13:37) (Below Threshold)
 @iian: you want want a napkin. You know, to wipe the boot polish off your mouth
  • 1 2
 @handynzl: yes of course he was that's the point!
  • 8 5
 @iian: no.
They give out of their extreme excess, not generosity. Besides most wealthy people give and end up richer because of the tax breaks they have engineered into the system.

Why does anyone defend people like these?
  • 9 13
flag up-left-down-right (Sep 21, 2023 at 16:12) (Below Threshold)
 A country with a lot of sycophants, unfortunately. Just watching the BBC created Pepper Pig episodes with my young son, show’s just how early the Brits try and indoctrinated the young into worshipping the royals (they call it culture).
  • 17 5
 You're not special or original for saying that, just watch the video and enjoy that he's a pretty neat old bloke going for a stroll in his giant garden.
  • 5 21
flag gouldelliott (Sep 21, 2023 at 16:47) (Below Threshold)
 @on-the-move: yeah. Except this isn't some "old guy" he's a racist, imperialist. Get a grip buddy.
  • 4 2
 @gouldelliott: Oh no how awful
  • 3 18
flag gouldelliott (Sep 21, 2023 at 17:29) (Below Threshold)
 @on-the-move: you are disgusting. I hope you get well.
  • 10 10
 @iian: Ha, good one. They are a parasite. Anyone who claims power due to 'divine rights' need to be locked up.
  • 3 0
 @Malky79: I like have more than one valid source before I start throwing stone
  • 4 2
 @Steventux: I’d have to ask why he hasn’t shape shifted into a reptile and killed all the Midgies, that’s what the Queen would have done.
  • 3 0
 @dotman: bang up to date with politics there, she only resigned 7 months ago.
  • 10 3
 @Malky79: @Malky79: I wasn't clear on how they contribute, which admittedly is indirectly, would be hard to measure and any reading I've done on it could be skewed by some Royal loyal twat, but they drum up massive tourism interest every year, royal related "merch", general public interest, job creation etc.

Don't get me wrong, I think the idea of some random family being a monarchy, built on a family history of invasion, conquering and mayhem is crazy. However, without abolishing them altogether (which isn't likely to happen this decade, might as well be real), what's the next best thing? Using their status to give exposure to good causes, highlighting social and environmental issues, partnering with trusts, which absolutely would not be as far along without their "input".

Again, not a royalist, I'm sure we'd agree more than disagree, but the charity work sways me towards thinking they shouldn't just be abolished overnight. And yes, my arse is sore from sitting on the fence, but I like to see things from both sides.
  • 4 0
 @iian: think it's also a valid point that they are an effective non-political state figure head. Forgein heads of state all want to meet the Queen/King over the PM, and this gives the UK an awful lot of soft power.
  • 1 8
flag dotman (Sep 22, 2023 at 2:17) (Below Threshold)
 @ro-bert: oh I'm sorry, guess they've stopped sucking from the English teat now they've got themselves an unelected in?
  • 2 1
 @Malky79: I suggest you get back to your mock chop and chips mate, leave my King alone!!!
  • 2 2
 @up-left-down-right: It's called history mate, I guess that was deleted in Australia whilst you were locked up for months.
  • 1 2
 @dotman: too right mate, good riddance to the ginger dwarf!!
  • 13 3
 @iian: It's great to see a measured reply and I completely understand your response. A lot of people subscribe to the idea that the royals "do a lot of good". I also used to believe this, because I'd heard it repeated so often. It's the result of a very successful PR campaign by the royals and the British establishment to preserve an institution that cannot be justified by any reasonable metric in a modern world or democratic country.
It's simply not true though. The more you find out about how little they actually contribute to the economy or charity, the more it is clear that their days should be numbered. On the tourism argument, the Palace of Versailles has almost 15 million visitors a year despite the French solving their royal problem in 1792.
Charles's coronation cost up to £100m of public money at a time when foodbank use is at an all-time high in the UK. Meanwhile Will's and Kate drop into a foodbank a short distance from their residence for a 5 min photo op and donate nothing. Charles is a massive climate hypocrite, as are the rest of the family.
They use Queen's/King's consent to interfere or exempt themselves from the law to suit their own ends.
The firm must be protected at all costs, and the fact the Queen was willing to fork out £12m to cover for Andrew's noncing about with Epstein should have been the last nail in the coffin.
They are the figureheads of a class system that reminds the largely subservient UK population of their place in the class structure, and reinforces the inferiority complex that ensures we continue to defer to our "betters".
Let's not forget either that Charles was great mates with Jimmy Saville, which at best shows him to be naive and ill-informed/advised.
I urge anyone who is on the fence to read a bit more on the subject. is a great starting point.
  • 1 0
 @dotman: no need to apologise. No idea, what you asking me for?
  • 2 2
 @thenotoriousmic: Bang on. I wish I'd seen that one before - it would have saved me typing a reply!
  • 4 0
 @Malky79: Will give it a read mate, could definitely be better informed. Appreciate the measured response too my man.
  • 4 1
 Royalty belongs on the scrapyard of history
  • 2 5
 @Malky79: Blah, blah, yawn.
  • 60 1
 Awesome to see real world interactions like this where the handlers and media aren't guiding the cult of personality.
  • 19 0
 I suppose I'm naive, I would have assumed there'd be some bodyguards or something.

Edit: Oh, there they are. Still, it is surprising to me that an average Joe could have a chance encounter. That could never happen in the states.
  • 35 2
 It might have happened when Bush was in office. He was an avid mountain biker and biked all over the place with the Secret Service following on bikes. He would also randomly show up to local BBQ joints while in office.
  • 27 1
 @FULL-SEND-ER: A few Secret Service ended up in the emergency room trying to keep up with Dubya.
  • 49 2
 @FULL-SEND-ER: A guy I used to sail with was on his MTB security detail, he wasn't Secret Service, but NPS police. Apparently the secret service didn't have many riders that could keep up with him on a bike, and asked other agencies if they had any MTB riders. This guy had to try out to ride with Bush by riding with some Secret Service guy who was pretty fast according to him. He after he rode with Bush a handful of times, he was put on his MTB detail and also did back country horse back riding with him too. He said ol' GW was fast and reckless on a bike, and would ride anything. I guess he would bomb the trails at Quantico and half the guys riding with him would have to walk the stuff GW wouldn't think twice to bomb down. A shop I worked at years ago had several stores and one was DC not too far from the White House, they had pictures of the owners with Bush, they got to service his bikes and sell him new ones. They also sold the Obama's bikes but never got to meet Barry.
  • 40 9
 @BikesBoatsNJeeps: And then he brought the same 'send it' attitude to his foreign policy dealings
  • 36 4
 @RLindsay24: Not trying to make this a political discussion... just about bikes.
  • 3 1
 @BikesBoatsNJeeps: I like this story! Any idea on what he rode?
  • 14 17
 @manofmanymilkcrates: A trek I think.

Anyway, Fu*k W and fu*k Charles.
  • 2 0
 @manofmanymilkcrates: Trek. The shop is no longer there but the rest of the stores are now owned by Trek.
  • 7 11
flag jrocksdh (Sep 21, 2023 at 11:14) (Below Threshold)
 Joe Can barely walk to the aircrafts lol
  • 5 1
 @FULL-SEND-ER: I live in southern Maine, and the local shop around in Kennebunk (he summers over in Kennebunkport) had Dubyas trek top fuel on display with a POTUS head tube badge. Was very cool to see.
  • 4 0
 @BikesBoatsNJeeps: Best president ever. Now watch this drive…
  • 9 1
 @FULL-SEND-ER: i sold a few bikes to guys that had to keep up with W and met alberto gonzales(US attorney general under bush) when i he came into the shop to get a tune up. the mtb detail guys told some wild stories and alberto was super nice and pretty chatty. i could tell he wasn't just riding to ride. he had a passion.

my buddy does rides on bushes farm with a disabled veterans groups and he says he stills sends the shit out of it. apparently the secret service guys really hate it when he gets on his ebike and puts it in boost lol.
  • 8 2
 @cptstoney: Alberto Gonzales can take a flying fu*k at a rolling donut to.

These people were f*cking evil.
  • 5 0
 @BrambleLee: Paul Bremmer used to come into the shop I’m at now. I think he’s given up riding at this point, but up until a couple years ago he was a regular. I guy I worked with there used to call him a war criminal, he didn’t appreciate that. He was one of those guys that bitched about everything. Came in once demanding to speak to a specific mechanic about a creak his bike had, the mechanic was busy running check-ins and there was a line of about five customers, I told him he’d have to wait in line. He got all up in a tizzy about it, I told him I could look at his bike, but that wouldn’t work. He was trying to make a group ride and started to raise his voice, ranting that we had replaced his bottom bracket and screwed it up, I again offered to check his bike, he finally accepted, I grab the bike, twist it around a bit realize it was the front skewer (Mavic road wheels had shit skewers) tighten the skewer a bit, creak goes away. I told him if he was still having an issue to drop by after his group ride. He sort of slinked it of the shop.
  • 13 0
 @BikesBoatsNJeeps: Your coworker called him a war criminal to his face? Me and that guy—we can hang.
  • 8 0
 @BrambleLee: more of a “what’s it like to be a war criminal?”
He just turned a walked away.
  • 3 1
 @BrambleLee: count me in on that. Sounds like a good dude.
  • 1 0
 @igxqrrl There were probably snipers with all 3 riders head locked in the visor while they were chatting casually.
  • 17 0
 Bruni is the king. Throw your bikes in a lake.
  • 10 0
 I met him some time back as he came to visit a project I ran. Im no royalist and wasnt expecting to be impressed. However he spent 90% of his visit talking to the most junior staff and showing a real interest in their work and also their aspirations. He was also exceptionally well informed on the topics he cares about (like the environment) to the point of being able to hold conversations in great detail with our science staff. I have to admit I was begrudgingly impressed at how down to earth and likeable the guy is. As detailed in the video, everyone I know who has met him says that they didnt expect much but came away with a different view of him.
  • 12 0
 I crossed paths with Trudeau a couple years ago. He was on a twitchy yellow 90's Cannondale and had four guards with him.
  • 22 0
 A slacker HTA would be in the interest of national security.
  • 2 0
 Let me guess, Trudeau was really good at turning left.
  • 11 2
 Excuse my ignorance but, what's a bothie?
  • 8 43
flag markokane (Sep 21, 2023 at 8:12) (Below Threshold)
 Google it?...
  • 28 0
 Primarily a Scottish thing although there might be some in other areas of the UK. It's a building typically somewhere hard to reach that's free for use by hikers and other people who are travelling outdoors. They've always got space to put down a roll mat and have a roof over your head, but often have a fireplace and whatnot too. There's quite a lot of them throughout the highlands.
  • 11 0
 A booth full of booties
  • 51 0
 @markokane: yesterday I was eavesdropping on a mildly heated yet respectful conversation between the owner of a small newspaper and a contributing writer concerning AI. The owner was stanchly against AI in any form whatsoever and would blacklist any writers using it even for grammar. The writer was taken aback a bit by the owner's conspiracy-esque ramblings, but his foundational reasoning resonated with me. He said he's basically against anything that reduces human-interaction. So, you could probably quickly point out some hypocrisy in his daily life, but it makes you think. For example, one might feel they'd like to hear the definition of a "bothie" from one of our fellow Scottish mountain bikers rather than pick up a dictionary or look it up on Google. Sometimes it is just nice to have a conversation. You really never know where it'll go.
  • 8 3
 Cheers guys an yeah, bit pointless telling some one asking a question on the internetz to go ask a question on the internetz ?
  • 1 1
 @5chmaus: pre a-few-years ago, some BODY did write those dictionaries and whatnot. By the newspaper owner’s logic, people should just ask him about the ‘news’ rather than buys his ad-rag, errr newspaper.
  • 2 1
 @naptime: still you couldve typed one word and had answer in a few seconds reading, from a verified source.

I wouldn't trust forums for all your future knowledge searching!! Lol
  • 7 0
 @naptime it’s a wee hoos sometimes with a moos loose aboot it
  • 1 0
 @trifecta: cheers for the ear worm!
  • 3 0
 @puukkopedro: or I could have interaction with actual human beings..
  • 7 0
 Pretty cool. Vanilla Ice climbed in my friends car and we drove him to the liquor store once. I had no idea who he was, had long hair and a goatee. It was weird.
  • 6 0
 Thats awesome stayed in that same Bothy back in 93' - there was enough of a wee dram left by previous visitors to warm my innards after pretty much the same lap.
  • 8 0
 So he has the KOM on Strava right?
  • 4 0
 That’s actually really cool, anyone else bumped into a famous public figure while out riding?
  • 62 0
 Didn’t see him, but I’ve heard Jesus Christ a few times
  • 3 0
 @Ensminger: tickled me pink that did.
  • 2 0
 A couple of Rasta guys that help me with trail building in Jamaica guided Bill + Hilary to a remote waterfall that we visit a lot by bike. To this day one of them can't figure out why these tourists had two guys in suits following them through the jungle. The other one knew who they were.
  • 5 0
 Well I see 'famous' mtb riders that the rest of the world wouldn't recognise like ratboy. Saw Peaty in the woods once. Was having a pee in the bushes, didn't say hi
  • 5 0
 I have run into Levy once or twice. Shot the shitnfor a bit. Does that count?
Saw Quinney out of the corner of my eye but didn't chat him up because he hates riding with people Razz
  • 5 0
 He seemed quite nice and approachable which is cool to see.
  • 25 0
 That’s because he was in human form.
  • 4 0
 McTrail Rider....a great YouTube channel,top lad and I’m glad he’s getting lots of exposure because of this.
  • 4 0
 Nice King, and nice trails!
  • 2 1
 Do you copy ? crackle,crackle ,we appear to have some peasants in the local area and they appear to be riding some sort of off road bicycles crackle,crackle. Rodger that crackle,crackle we are on our way .
  • 12 7
 Not My King.
  • 2 0
 This is how you do cheap and effective promotion. The target audience will never wonder why he is walking without any security.
  • 1 0
 You mean likely some of the people that they passed in the cars ahead of them, which they mention in the vid or likely also some of the people they pass later in the vid?

That lack of security?
  • 3 0
 See the term trail is used relatively loosely in Scotland. That’s some janky shit at the top.
  • 4 0
 Was he doing his Duke of Edinburgh award?
  • 2 0
 Like McTrail, I want to say it’s whatever, but damn that’s pretty cool.
  • 2 0
 I'm more stocked about the awesome Louise being on Pinkbike than Charles to be fair haha
  • 3 1
 what he's just out there by himself?!.....[@6:30] oh....
  • 1 0
 Still though, in our country the major leaders aren't allowed 15 feet without massive security.
  • 2 3
 The Royal Family ended for me when Lizzie died. They can all go fuck themselves, except maybe Kate, as she is extraordinarily beautiful, and maybe Anne. Rest are a bunch of hypocrites, crooks and nonces.
  • 1 0
 A true man of the people. More than happy to pay my £1.29 per year to keep them going!
  • 13 11
 No helmet?!?!
  • 5 6
 lol, I assumed he took it off to talk to him but....nope
  • 11 2
 When climbing no, but later in the video when descending, yes.
  • 11 2
 He has it strapped on his backpack, looks like they are going up a big hill.
  • 14 18
flag betsie (Sep 21, 2023 at 8:40) (Below Threshold)
 Exactly... cant believe you got negative prosps for your comment!!!!! You can fall off onto a rock with your head whilst climbing, especially as you will be chill and eyes off the trail quite often at that point!!! At least he had it in his rucksack to fall onto...
  • 18 3
 @betsie: I hear you, but really, it's a fire road. The risk of head injury is probably about the same as for trail running or playing some basketball with your friends, and probably much lower than the risk while in the car going to and from the riding location.
  • 7 6
 @betsie: not going to tell another adult what to do but its always when you least expect and guard is down...worst concussion I've had was while climbing slick rock on a fire road, front tire just buckled while my mind wandered elsewhere (but had a helmet on), separated my shoulder in the process.
  • 4 4
 As someone who’s been down the path of a severe head injury (coma, bleed on brain, memory issues and severe concussion symptoms to this day), it baffles me that anyone would want to risk putting their loved through hell by risking it.

I was wearing a helmet, and that’s why I’m not dead.
  • 7 2
 @SATN-XC: by this logic do you wear one walking to the local store?
  • 4 2
 @MrRight: You're damn right there. It's those that look after us at home / don't have us to help them as much that suffer.
  • 3 2
 @MrRight: you fell over at sub-walking pace on a climb and got those gnarly injuries?!? Woah.
  • 2 0
 @big-red: sure, your right.
I am betting everyone with a brain injury from falling off on a fire road or ever a basic road would agree ..

Oh... almost lost my brother to this very thing, undiagnosed skull fracture and massive brain tumour years later. He loved collapsing and dedicating himself when out, losing all his weight, 8 hours in theatre and permanent brain change, mood swings post op.

My poor uncle sustained a head injury when a deer ran into him without a helmet on.... he wasn't so lucky and passed away from his injuries.

Didn't Kenta Gallaghers crank snap on a fire road and he ended up in hospital with fractures, lucky he was wearing a helmet.

But... it's just a fire road with no risks eh!
  • 2 0
 @SATN-XC: 100% but folk think it's cool and just a fire road.
  • 4 0
 @MrRight: I had just posted about my brother and uncle.
Helmets save lives but they also save concussions and other head strike related injuries.

I wouldn't even wear a cheap helmet. It's not worth the risk.
  • 1 0
 @betsie: I didn't say that, and for the record, I typically wear my helmet everywhere. Though if I'm doing a ride where a full-face is warranted, I think the risk of doing a fire road climb without a helmet is more than offset by wearing a full-face on the downhill rather than wearing my half shell the full ride.

But the reality is that I've seen exactly what you've seen with your brother in my life as well. But from other things we all do everyday where nobody would dream of wearing a helmet, never mind dumping on those that don't wear one.

I know a guy who fell over on the sidewalk while out drinking one night. Severe TBI and will basically be a toddler in a man's body for the rest of his life. Grew up with a girl who had a tree branch fall on her in the woods while at summer camp. Luckily in her case, only a minor TBI but very much with permanent aftermath. Room mate in uni was on the bus home from a water polo competition when it crashed. If they'd been wearing a helmet on that bus, they wouldn't have had to quit as captain of the top water polo team in the country due to a TBI.

Everything we do has some inherent risk. Shaming people for not wearing a helmet during just one of those activities while giving a free pass for others are just as risky or some much more so (i.e. getting in a car) doesn't help.
  • 3 2
 @big-red: the guy posting the video has lots of followers and should be setting an example in the videos he posts.
Everyone has a responsibility for their own safety, but influencers/vloggers have a far greater responsibility as their audience is much bigger.
I don't follow the guy, but many do.
574K views of a boy not wearing a helmet!
He has nearly 38k followers.
Hopefully they wear a helmet in other videos and this is a 1 off.
  • 3 0
 @betsie: Fair point. Especially since it's not particularly hot and he has the helmet right there on his pack.
  • 5 3
 The Battenbergs.
  • 3 0
 A great cake
  • 2 1
 @Malky79 oooooh very bitter...
  • 1 1
 Shocking that he was out there all by himself with no huge security team!! Wild.
  • 1 0
 But those rocks man! not my usual easy singletrack...
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