When we left Applecross we had a plan. We wanted to visit the Applecross Photographic Gallery, we wanted to cross Bealach na Bà (Pass of the Cattle) and we wanted to be in Glendale, on the Isle if Skye, before dark.
Our Airbnb host in Ullapool told us to say hello to Jack at the Applecross Photographic Gallery. And being true to our word, we went in search of the Gallery, which as an added bonus, offered a free cup of coffee for the visit.
Jack was a little distracted when we called in to say hello. The World Cup Rugby match between England and New Zealand has begun and England had just scored. Jack was jumping up and down amongst his framed prints and assorted photographic paraphernalia.
He made us a cup of coffee but his heart wasn’t in it. England were in the lead. The coffee was cold!
We purchased a few of his photographic cards, gulped down the coffee and left him in peace.
We stopped in at the Applecross Inn and had a hot cup of coffee and a bacon roll (breakfast had finished but they took pity on us and rustled up a quick snack) and chatted with some of the other visitors. It was cosy and warm and we could have stayed longer.
The locals are obviously very polite and we happily acquiesced to their request regarding parking in the area. How could we not!!
We needed to get moving. we had a mountain pass to negotiate!
Bealach na Bà could look like this, depending on the season. We would have been happy with either.
For us, it looked like this!
And occasionally like this.
Had we have been patient we probably would have had a better view. Never the less, Grahame enjoyed the drive over Scotland’s 3rd highest mountain pass.
We called in at some castle ruins at Strome to take a few pics. We made sure we put the handbrake on properly while there.
And then it was on to the Isle of Skye. Saw our new car, but someone else was driving it!!
We drove to the Kyle of Lochalsh and the over the Skye Bridge*. ( There was a great battle there about 20 years ago!!)
Landscape beauty overload began immediately (not that it had actually finished!)
We drove straight to the main town, Portree and found somewhere for lunch.
Portree Harbour was so pretty. The colourful buildings on the waterfront reminded me of Porto. ( Mithyl, do you agree???)
I’m thinking this is a pretty good advertisement for this Fish and Chip shop!
We pointed the car north , and headed to Uig. It was a pretty drive, dotted with sheep, waterfalls and little harbours and a ….. castle(?).
The car then headed on a loop road in totally the opposite direction to what we had planned, and we found ourselves at the Quiraing, a “landslip” with some crazy rock formations.
Just as we arrived, the heavens opened and sleet and small bits of hail pelted down. It had been sunny five minutes earlier! We waited it out in the car and watched in amazement as this bride and groom raced for shelter. A spectacular wedding photographic session had been rudely interrupted. Talk about trashing the dress.
Five minutes later, a rainbow formed and the sun was shining again!
We had gotten ourselves a little damp at the Quiraing and went in search of a solution. We found the Flodigarry Hotel. It had one real deer, two fake deer, a nice bar and a family playing scrabble. Most importantly it had a nice fire which quickly dried off our clothes and got our circulation flowing again.
It was getting late and we still had quite a drive to the other side of the Isle. A little village called Glendale was our destination for the night. Time to move.
We still found time to stop for a few quick pics. Can you blame us?
We arrived in the dark, at our wee cottage in Glendale where we were welcomed by Brigitte and her little menagerie. We couldn’t see the view , but our little cottage was warm and comfy.
So, we achieved two of our three planned items for the today. Arriving in the dark, lost us a brownie point. Oh well.
* The battle of Skye Bridge : we watched a doco on BBC tonight (google it or watch on YouTube) which coincidentally was about the “new” bridge opened in 1995. It was built to replace the ferry, but it was one of those public/private deals and the American owners slapped a £5 toll on every car crossing. The locals weren’t happy, kicked up a huge stink, got arrested and charged, fought their convictions (some successfully), came up with lots of legal arguments, got arrested again, served time in prison and finally got the toll removed. It was all about the vibe!