Saturday, 17 October 2009
From the archives: Friday 15 October 2004
vtveen, lower image courtesy Kennethverburgh.nl). It took its time, arriving at Elgol Pier at 10.15. Once you reach Elgol, it's a very steep descent from 110 to 0 metres. Not much to be seen there, apart from a stunning aspect of the Cuillins. Unfortunately, I haven't got the pictures available. Sgurr na Stri stands out between Camasunary and Coruisk, and the teeth of the Cuillins rearing up to the left. Rubha'n Dunain tapers out just beyond Soay. I climbed up the hill until the sign that said Camasunary 2 1/2 miles, Sligachan 10 1/2 miles. I joined that path and commenced an airy cliffwalk, and if I say airy, it was. It quickly became fairly rough, and required a bit of scrambling. Not to mention that point where it ended at the edge of a 100 ft precipice. Yikes! I'd missed a turning that was not signposted. Half way up the coast a glen comes up from the hinterland, and it takes a bit of mapreading to find the onward route. It remained a fairly tough undertaking, and was knackered by the time I collapsed on the beach at Camasunary. Lots of flotsam and jetsam up there. There is also a farmhouse and at the far end, right underneath Sgurr na Stri a bothy. This contained two sleeping platforms, one of them actually occupied (this was 1.30pm) by a sleeping person. Lots of candles in bottles. A shelf contained spare food. This bothy was fairly tidy. I've heard stories of people abusing these remote hide-outs for lonely booze-ups. I dabbled about Camasunary for a bit, then went up the hill and slowly, very slowly, made my way to Robostan, where I'd be waiting for a bus back to Broadford. I arrived there at 4.40, bus not being due until 5.30. So I decided to walk for a bit, rather than stand there and freeze. Half a mile beyond Strathaird House I came upon a lame sheep. It didn't run but merely hobbled painfully. When I stopped a little distance behind it in order not to scare it into hobbling into the road, into the path of an oncoming car, it looked round at me. Mutely saying "Now then, are you really going to kill me?". But I crossed to the other side of the road and it hobbled away. A few miles further, in sight of Torrin and the Red Hills, a German couple pulled over and offered me a lift to Broadford. Which I accepted. They were due to travel back to Karlsruhe the next day, but would fly to Frankfurt Hahn. Some 80 miles away from Frankfurt. Arrived back in Broadford at 5.45.