Friday 17th.- We left Fife this morning and headed for the Drovers Inn near Loch Lomond stopping for a bar lunch at Mhor 84 near Balquidder. Mhor 84 is part of a group based around the area and although the decor left something to be desired the food was excellent! The Drovers and Mhor 84 were picked as add ons to the trip due to a book Carol gave me on my return from China and Vietnam. Of course we now have every intention of covering every location mentioned in it it looks like those trips will be the subject of many a blog to come.
After the bar lunch we travelled onwards towards the Drovers the weather was a real mix of wet and wetter still! We arrived at the Drovers and after booking in took some time to look at the stuffed animals and birds adorning every available space. Although the Drovers has a shabby and neglected look about it as befits Pub of the year 1705 the room was in good order. We did not bother unpacking as we were only staying one night instead we got dressed for bad weather and headed out the pub and onto the West Highland Way and Rob Roys Bathtub both items in the book. On our return we stopped in at Beinglas farm campsite for a cup of tea and then headed back to our gaff for the night the reputedly haunted Drovers Inn! After watching Le Tour we headed down to the bar for some musical entertainment and also some drunken entertainment from a stag party visiting from London.
Sat 18th-Up bright and early for breakfast, we were on the road for 1030 and headed for Fort William for a browse in the shops and a wee stretch of the legs. Unusually when we go away I was doing all the driving as we had the bikes with us and Carols convertible can’t carry them! Back on the road and I was driving through rain most of the time but it looked like we were headed for blue skies. I pushed on and we reached our Cabin about 5pm. Described as luxury acomm it is certainly clean and comfortable. There was a welcome pack waiting for us which was really handy as between the pack and what we had brought with us it meant that we did not need shopping right away. After unpacking we went for a walk around Portree then headed back for Le Tour and bed.
Sun 19th-Generally I like to have my days planned out so I know exactly what I am doing and Carol is the same but this was meant to be a relaxing holiday so we decided to let things play out and just take things easy. Waking to a clear day and with rain forecast for the next two days we decided to get out and get some walking done. We headed for the north of the island and walked up the Quairaing which was absolutely mobbed and we had a lot of bother getting parked the walk took about and hour and was 2.4 miles with 530 ft climbed. After returning to the car we headed to Staffin and the village shop for some lunch. Some crappy tea and average food later and we were back on the road heading for the Old Man of Storr another 2.3 mile walk with almost 600 ft of climbing. The day had remained generally clear with excellent views from both walks.
Mon 20th -Dull and wet we decided to spend most of the day in Portree wandering around and doing some shopping. There was a Dutch cruise liner anchored in the bay and lighters travelled back and forth all day. We walked around an area called Scorrybreac which I later went and ran around. The route was mainly on trails was 4.7 miles long with 557 ft climb a good wee route.
Tue 21st-Up and away to Sconser for the Raasay ferry. We parked at Sconser and wheeled the MTB’s on board parked them in the bike rack and sat in the passenger lounge for the 25 mins journey. The main reason for the visit was of course “the Book” but also Calums Road also made famous in a book. This is a stretch of road prepared by a crofter because the local council would not do it. The day was dull with occasional showers and an already quite difficult ride was made harder by a head wind. A total of 20 miles and 2080 ft of climb. Carol found it hard at times but stuck in to make it back for 4:30 and a cuppa in Raasay House. Whilst we waited for the 6:05 we went for a walk on the beach a great end to a fab day on the Island. On our way back to the cabin we stopped off for dinner at the Aros centre.
Weds 22nd- Yesterday we both felt as if we were coming down for something and that was confirmed when we woke up today both feeling a bit fluey so an easy day was planned. Into the car and down to the Sleat Peninsula and a visit to Isleronsay once more in the book. Isleronsay was like most places we have visited on this holiday busy and with parking problems! We spent a lot of time in the gallery of Pam Carter excellent art but with some originals selling for £5K+ out of our range. We headed to Armadale further down the peninsula for a tea and a scone then under a big rain cloud, headed back towards home with a stop off in Broadford for food for the evening.
Thurs 23rd-Still feeling a bit off but waking up to blue skies we resolved to get moving and get active! We headed south again this time for Glen Brittle and the Fairy pools. We watched two gents having a dip in the waters there and gazed at the cloud shrouded Cuillin tops.
W headed back to the overcrowded car park and got the bikes ready to cycle. There is a selection of waymarked routes in the Glen Brittle forest so we latched onto the yellow route and, with my MBLA route card in hand set off up the first hill. The route was 9.5 miles long although strava credited us with 10 miles and 1663 f of climbing. After 3 miles we stopped off at a picnic spot for sandwiches and tea and to admire the vista infront of us.
With the beach the loch and the mountains bathed in sunshine i was amazing and the place to be! The route was well marked and circulasr and a s we got back to the car park the clouds had lifted from the tops of the cuillin and you could gaze upon them in all their splendour! After the exercise of the day we were feeling a little worst for wear and headed home t a light tea and Le Tour!
Fri 24th- Carol was feeling the cold worst than I so after serving her breakfast in bed I set off for a run in some woods across from the cabin behind the Aros centre.
After the run and a shower we headed into Portree for a day around the shops and also some lunch. We managed not to get too soaked in the rain but it wasnt a pleasent day out! We headed home and got ready for Le Tour a great day in the mountains, mountains which I have biked I felt for them. Carol was getting progressively worst something confirmed when she started popping pills.
Sat 25th-Up, clean, pack and go. I was driving and Carol was snoozing. We stopped in Plockton and stretched our legs and then headed home with a lunch break at The Green Welly.
We made it just in time for Le Tour and L’Alpe 21 bends of tension a great day and fitting end to the tour. It was also an end to our holiday!