The Vault Regulars

Monday, August 27, 2012

Gairloch - Monday.

 It was a shock today when we found out about the tragedy that occurred yesterday evening. It's difficult to comprehend after it had been such a lovely day with a still loch. 3 youngsters and a father dead after capsizing from their canoe. We watched from the croft as the search helicopter scanned the shoreline in the dark, spotlight highlighting the water edge and kicking spray high.
 At this time we didn't know what the search was for but we knew with all the activity it wasn't a practice. We feel for the families.

 Today we expected really poor weather after watching the forecast and although we awoke to rain hitting the window it didn't last long. We didn't rush to get ready as we had only planned a short low walk so that Dorothy would enjoy it too.
 We drove into the village and parked on the waterfront at Flowerdale. Although the odd shower came and went it was still not waterproof weather, in fact it was quite warm. There was a stiff breeze but as we set off for the walk up to the waterfalls it became sheltered and quite humid in the forestry.

 Flowerdale estates have done some new paths which are not marked on the OS map but they are easy to follow and end up at the waterfalls. It was a shame that Flowerdale house has tried to become "Private" by putting up cheap and nasty screening. Shame for it's such a lovely house.

 Quite a few wild flowers were photographed along the way,with Fungi and lichens too. The Rowan berries were incredibly bright red.

 Walking up beyond the waterfalls we headed for open moorland. An Groban and Sithean Mor looked enticing but too much for Dorothy. The views will be wonderful so Sheila and I will head up there soon. Crossing the bridge over Gleann a Ghrobain, we stopped for a coffee. No sooner had we stopped than we were inundated with the dreaded midge. We covered up and had a good laugh wearing midge nets drinking coffee. Another short shower came and went but again nothing much but the wind was picking up.

 Heading back down the track we passed Flowerdale House and turned sharp right. A good path through the forestry which comes out adjacent to a well kept cemetery. Just a short road walk back to the car.

 Back to base for some lunch. Louise you are so right, what a wonderful butchers.

 Post lunch we headed off to Melvaig for a high coastal walk. The views simply wonderful, the light amazing and the wind fierce. At some points it almost blew the camera tripod over and made us all look like Michelin men. Still it was great to be out here enjoying another day in this wonderful place.
 The Outer Hebrides looming in the haze and Skye shinning in the bright sun.

More tomorrow.


  1. Good you are all getting out and about and enjoying the scenery, coffee, weather and midges! I think the NW is getting the best conditions in the country at present. Better than us at any rate.

    1. We are getting about Gibson but its as rough as a bears thingy!
      It's heavy showers and howling.

  2. Glad to be of help Alan. Another good walk is the Fairy Lochs, across the bay at The Sheldaig Hotel, Badachro. It goes up into the hills and feels quite remote although it's not that far really. There are the remains of an aircraft that crashed up there during the war, I think. Fabulous views galore and a nice lochan with a sandy beach to picnic my, but probably a bit much for Dorothy.

    1. Hi Louise.
      Oh its rough today. Went to Fairy lochs, but it was very wet and gusty. Bought a round of drinks in the bar at Badachro and i thought he was offering me shares in the place. Food good and fairly priced. Drinks hellishly expensive. Good atmosphere and we are eating there tonight.
      Any ideas of the grid ref of the downed plane?

    2. NG 810 708 I believe. There is a memorial, a plaque in the cliff face the Liberator struck on it's journey back to USA. I did my first wild camp up near there, near Mullach nan Cadhaichean. Full of useless information me! We've never been to the Badachro Inn or the Shieldaig Hotel, perhaps a little remiss of us, but there are so many places to try! The children saw their first golden eagle when we did the Flowerdale walk, it's lovely there.

    3. Thanks Louise we will try and get up to see it before we go home on saturday. Had evening meal in the Badachro tonight. Thought we had joined a kids tea party. Will leave it to the 2nd sitting if we ever go back.

  3. When we where up there in June, we walked up the same route to the waterfalls, didn't go beyond them though as where booked on the next whale watching trip (alas no whales). A really nice walk and at the time the Broom was in full bloom which was very picturesque.

  4. Hi Phil,
    Its an easy couple of hours. It can be extended as much as you want which is good. Lots of Rowan berries but not much broom. Plenty of Vetch though.
    Called in the Old Inn but wasn't impressed. Boring touristy place.


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