June 01, 2019

A Drive in Scotland with Hikes

1. Fly into Inverness from London. Birmingham Airport is also good to fly from - only 70 minutes by train from London, Euston.

 2. Drive to Ullapool on the west coast.

There's an ok Tesco's in Ullapool.

A good b and b is Suilven 3 miles north of Ullapool on a single track road to Rhue - bedrooms ok, lounge very good, breakfast very good, short stroll to Rhue lighthouse.

Rhue lighthouse + Ullapool-Stornoway ferry, Scotland

3. Climb Stac Pollaidh from the car park. Good path, do it as a circle up and round the back of the mountain, about 2 and a half hours. This is a must, despite the other hikers.

Stac Pollaidh and Suilven
Grace on the Stac Pollaidh path, Cul Mor behind
Grace on Stac Pollaidh
Grace on Stac Pollaidh

4. Visit Knockan Crag, a lovely easy walk round a world famous geo-site.

Grace at Knockan Crag

5. Climb Quinag from the A894 car park marked. "Quinag is a magnificent and complex mountain with three summits attaining Corbett status. The ascent of all three is one of the finest hillwalks in Scotland, with fine peaks, dramatic ridges and stunning views. If the full walk is too much, the ascent of the first peak (with a return the same way) is a short and fairly straightforward hillwalk with rewards out of all proportion to the effort involved."

Spidean Coinich, Quinag, Scotland

6. Take the car ferry from Ullapool to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis.

Stornoway ferry approaching Ullapool

Rhue lighthouse from the Stornoway ferry

On the ferry to Lewis

7. Drive south from Stornoway to Harris, past Tarbert to circle round the southern peninsula. 8. Vist the cafe and gallery at Geocrab on the way. 9. Visit the church at Rodel.

In St Clement's Church, Rodel, southern tip of Isle of Harris

10. Visit Luskentyre sands.

Luskentyre beach, Isle of Harris

11. Take the car ferry from Tarbert to Uig on the Isle of Skye.

The Skye ferry at Tarbert, Isle of Harris

Leaving Harris on the ferry to Skye 12. From Uig on Skye it's 20 minutes drive to the Quiraing car park. This is a famous landscape. Take the path from the car park as far as you feel like it and maybe come back over the high plateau. Strangely I don't have any good pictures of my own.

13. Do the picturesque drive south to Elgol. Skye can be heavily visited, so best to book a b and b in advance preferably at Elgol.  On the way you get fine views of Blaven.

14. Walk up the coast north from Elgol to Camasunary and back. I once slept in the bothy there after climbing Blaven.

15. Drive back to Broadford and on across the bridge to Kyle of Lochalsh on the mainland.

16. If you still have time before heading back to Inverness airport, then the next stretch has many points of interest such as the Applecross peninsula, Mellon Udrigle, Poolewe WW2 naval base, the mountains of Torridon and much else. If you want to do one of the finest ridge walks in Britain, then climb An Teallach (pronounced 'An Shaylack').

The Great Wilderness from An Teallach

An Teallach ridge

17. Dont miss the very short walk to Corrieshallock Gorge.

18. You can fill up the rental car at Tescos on the big roundabout a few miles before Inverness airport.

March 24, 2018

I'm back

2004-2010 I was here at Blogger.

2010-2016 I used Zenfolio.

2018-  Here I am back at Blogger. It's free, it persists, it's not Wordpress with all those tiresome updates, the Simple theme can be stripped of most of its clutter.

December 14, 2016

December 28, 2010

What Just Happened ?

This interview is from March 2009 but is still the best account of What Just Happened that I know and an intellectual delight:

December 26, 2010

NJ garden birds and other critters

Last May I photographed a bunch of garden birds and a few critters from a single open window in a New Jersey suburb. It was for a daughter's school science project, which is code for "father's science project competition." I became a little obsessed with capturing the sheer featheriness of birds without losing detail by boosting contrast for visual drama. Available light only.

Here's a belated gallery.

The cardinal shown is the state bird of New Jersey. What Americans call a robin is nothing like the real thing, but the American grey squirrel is the same that colonized England and is still hyperpowerful. It would make an apter national critter than the bald eagle - it's acrobatic, persistent, can take a big fall, is ruthless to rivals and some of them still have nuts.