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Published: September 2nd 2011
Today, we have planned a full days drive north, into the Highlands and are booked into Creag Mhor Lodge for the night.
The weather starts out promising enough as the light rain we have had for the last couple of days burns off and though the sky is still overcast we do have glimpses of blue and some sun.
The road we have chosen is good driving despite having to pull over, on a regular basis, to allow the trucks that ride our bumper to pass.
As we start to climb into the Highlands we are amazed at the number of people using bicycles to tour the countryside. The rain has started again, this time with more intensity and the temperature has dropped to single figures. We stop at the top of one pass, for a cup of hot chocolate, at a mobile drinks van and we watch with disbelief as another group of cyclists fight the cutting rain and mist.
It is difficult to describe how intense a green the countryside looks, coupled with the mist and sporadic sunshine.
We then head back down to the coast line and colourful villages, stone bridges, rugged cliffs,
rich green glens and silver coloured lochs drift by.
We pass villages such as Dombarton, Inveraray and Kilmelford before stopping for a feed of fish and chips at Oban for lunch. From here it is less than an hour to Ballachulish and our accommodation.
As mentioned we will spend the night at Creag Mohr Lodge, built in 1890 for the wife of the Episcoplian Bishop of Argyll and the Isles, this grand Victorian loch side home is now a family run lodge. Catering to the vast number of hikers that trek the highlands and those wishing and ski the slopes of Nevis, during the winter months. It appears the owner is in hospital having just given birth to their first child and we are fortunate to have Ingrid take care of our needs.
Impressively, Creag Mohr lodge has a collection of over 340 single malt whiskeys to tempt our taste buds, oh well what the heck.
It had been our intention to stay here for two nights but unfortunately they only have the one. Ingrid informs us that she and her husband, John, had owned the lodge prior to the current owners and now own a
small Bed and Breakfast (next door) and if we were interested we could spend an extra night with them.
What a find, with spectacular views of Loch Linnhe, we will eventually stay an extra 3 nights using John and Ingrid’s home as a base for us to explore this amazing area.
Loch Linnhe is a traditional sea loch (or sea inlet) stretching 15 kilometres in length and averaging 2 kilometres in width. Forth Williams, a major tourist town, and Ben Nevis lie at the northern end of the loch and is a junction to many of the tourism sights in the highland region.
As the Lodge does not provide evening meals we will make our way down to the Loch Leven Hotel for dinner a couple of times.
The stroll on sunset is breathtaking and once again we have been very fortunate in our choice of accommodation.
Tomorrow we intend to take a drive over to the Isle of Mull.
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