Day 04 – Final Scouting on the Isle of Skye and Heading toward Edinburgh
We started out the day by heading over the mountains to a small fishing village.
The roads here are narrow, often one track with “passing places” that barely allow for two cars to squeeze by. At one point, we met a truck, and I opted to back up to a much wider place rather than risk the narrower option where we were!
The scenery was dramatic in places, and more pastoral in others. Sheep were everywhere, dotting the hillsides, wandering along the road, little lambs bleating for maaa-maaa and the next meal.
We stopped at an ancient, little church ruin, sheep grazing all around, rubbing their hindquarters against the stones, leaving bits of wool here and there.
Arriving at the fishing village, we saw that most of the fishing boats were out … fishing, of course. The mountains tumbled into the sea, with the occasional white croft gracing their bases. It was pretty impressive. I did a mini Same Place – Different View, to wit…and …
Back up the mountainsides we went, heading for Portree to check out the Visitor’s Center to see if there was anything we had missed, either from this trip or from the last time we were here. Maps are always updated, so we got a couple of new ones. Then, after lunch overlooking the harbour (British for harbor), we left for our next hotel, an interim stop between the Isle of Skye and Edinburgh.
We tried to find the next Visitor’s Center across the Skye Bridge, but for all the signs pointing to the little “i” sign, we could not find the center for love nor money. Finally, we stopped in at the local Co-op store, and I asked someone in the parking lot, “Are you from around here?”
“Yes. May I help you?”
“Actually, yes. Where do you hide the Visitor’s Center?”
He laughed and said they had moved it some time ago to the castle, but that they were trying to get it back.
Arnie and I felt better. After all, we’ve traveled the world, and we can usually find a place, even if not on the first round. We had a good laugh along with the nice gentleman.
Back by long lochs (lakes) we went, marveling at the unusual stillness of the surfaces, looking for a place where the reflections made a good photograph. There had been recent clear cutting in the area, so we found nothing. Deciding to take another route to the hotel, we headed away from the main lochs and passed a pretty rushing river and stopped for some photos.
Later, driving along a ridge, we saw this evening scene. The rain was coming in, but the lochs were still so amazingly still.
After checking into our hotel and having something to eat and drink, we headed out for a walk along the locks. This is one of the many of a system of 29 locks of the Caledonian Canal that stretches some 62 miles along the famous string of lochs that run northeast to southwest. The survey for the canal was done in 1773, but the canal itself did not open until 1822. It should be noted that the man-made portion of the canal comprises only one-third of its total length.
I have always loved the locks. I’ve canoed through several in the south of England, and walking along these brought back memories.
Next stop: Edinburgh and meeting with our group.
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