Published: June 22nd 2012June 22nd 2012
fun for even the oldies!
When we arrived at Plockton we had just had the scary experience of negotiating the Skye road bridge. This bridge is 25 metres high, but as we approached it really looked as if our 23 metre mast was just about to hit. Alan had been reassuring me that there was plenty of room, but when he looked up, it looked so close he stopped the boat, just in case. As it was we were soon underneath and safe.
Plockton is one of the most picturesque villages in Scotland, and there is a big wide mooring area, with mooring balls to tie onto, and room to anchor as well. Forested hillsides line the shore one side and a small whitewashed village the other. There are walks all around the village, and the people were very friendly to us, and the dog. We went out for a drink in the evening, and the pubs were busy, for such a tiny place. Also we had some great walks in the forest with the dog, who loved splashing around in the shallows as well. We found a rope swing that was fun too.
Leaving Plockton the next
an island scene that isunbelievably Scotland, or specifically Rona.
day we saw several pods of small black dolphins and as we motored out over a flat calm sheet of water the reflections were quite remarkable.
Soon we were approaching Rona, a small very pretty little island. The anchorage had a torturous entrance, but soon we were in a small pool surrounded by rocks covered in seals. We went ashore, and walked around the island.
The views were really quite Mediterranean, and the boat lay surrounded by blue shining sea. It was very warm ashore, and on the boat. We talked to the man who lives on the island, he was very friendly and sold us some milk, I was quite tempted to get into the water, but when I put my toes in it was icy!
Next day 26th
May we carried on to Dunvegan in Skye, as I wanted to visit the castle.
The motor over to Skye was lovely, again so calm, just a ripple on the water, and off the headland we tried to catch a mackerel, but no luck. On Rona a small tripper boat had visited and the lady there told me that they had seen
a minke whale, but all we saw was birds, flocking round one patch of water. By half past two we had reached Dunvegan, and anchored off the castle. soon ashore and Alan was very upset to have to pay £22 to get in, plus £2.50 to land at the jetty. It only took us half an hour to walk round the few rooms that were open. He moaned loads.
We needed petrol for the outboard and decided to go up to the small village to get some. When we got to the hotel landing stage, it was obviously too far for us to walk with the petrol tank. While we were debating what to do, in a slightly heated way, a young woman came by, heard us, and said ‘och I 'll get the car out and take you’ And that is what she did. What a kind thing to do. We were very grateful.
Fuelled up, we had a drink in the garden of the hotel, as we had the dog. It was still very warm in the garden. Then back to the boat for a restful dinner.
Dunvegan to Seil Island
breeze at dunvegan castle
a beautiful summer evening anchored off Dunvegan Castle Skye
We left again on a calm sunny morning, our boat, has hardly rolled, it feels so calm. We motored past Dunvegan head, keeping out of the shipping lanes, and passing ‘the merchant’ headland. By 1500 we were passing Eigg, (this is where you sing the Skye boat song ‘Eigg on the starboard bow’ )
We were heading towards Oban, but as Ian and Tracey could not make it, decided to stop at Seil island an anchorage about 12 miles from Oban. It was another stunning anchorage, clear clear water. We went ashore and walked the dog, then brought her home, and went to the pub which was a charming walk through bluebell woods, littered with wild flowers. Too hot even for our jumpers, it seemed to stay light forever. The pub, tigh an tuch or some such thing, the name related to the fact that the highlanders had to wear trousers rather than their kilts, too easy to hide weapons under a kilt! We had a meal in the pub garden, still warm at 8 pm and then had a walk to see the high stone bridge over the ‘Atlantic’ . A small petrol station ,
brightly painted sits there, complete with old fashioned pumps. All very twee.
The island is called ‘SeillIsland’ and this little bit of water which the bridge crosses, is the last bit of the moat of sea around it. The countryside behind was lush and mountainous, and on the way home the biggest hares came out to play, good job we did not have the dog with us!
The motor down to Gigha takes you through some channels between the island of Islay and Jura, they look pretty uninhabited. Our echo sounder was so confused by the depths it stopped working.
When we approached Gigha, it was sunny and bright, and we tied onto a mooring ball off the little town. We soon went ashore to visit the Ardmurchan gardens, it took us about half an hour to walk there, I was wishing I had brought some water, it was so hot. We walked around the gardens, they are quite a work in progress, and the paths are woodland style paths, but not for letting dogs off. It was shady under the trees, and the grassed areas looked
well cared for. There are two walled gardens with neat rows of vegetables. We enjoyed our visit.
That night we decided to go to the pub for a drink before dinner, the pub was just up the hill, a small bar with a few people there. We had met some men coming off a commercial fishing boat, obviously there for the night.
As we were going back to our mooring a charter boat called us over and invited us for a pimms, they were a group of guys from Liverpool and were already well stuck into the drinks. They were very friendly, and hospitable, we gave them a lift to the jetty, when they went ashore for their meal.
There are more photos below