Monday, 22 February 2016

13th February - Glasgow to the Isle of Skye, Scotland

It was an early start for a flight from Heathrow to Glasgow, and uneventful flight that arrived 15 minutes early, bags arrived and we were in the hire car and heading north before 10.00 am.

As we left the outskirts of Glasgow the clouds rolled in, and with rain and sleet.  The temperature was just above freezing and there was snow on the surrounding hills.  As a result the journey around Loch Lomond and the Trossachs was obscured by low cloud and rain.

Our journey would take us north on the A82, through Bridge of Orchy, with a planned stop off in Fort William for provisions.  Before then though the rain ended and there were periods of sunshine and cloud as we drove through the beautiful scenery of Glen Coe.

The Glen was formed from the remains of a super volcano, then the wonderful "U" shaped valley was finished through the wonder of glacial erosion.  

As we approached from the east the mountains on either side were wild and snow capped on either side, but as we approached the village of Glencoe the landscape became softer its rolling hills

Driving into Fort William it was clear blue skies and plenty of sunshine.  It seemed strange to still be in the UK with cold temperatures and snow capped mountains visible from the supermarket car park.

From Fort William we continued north on the A82 through the Great Glen, or Glen More.  This a long straight valley that stretches from Fort William to Inverness.  It follows a long geological fault that bisects the Scottish Highlands with the Grampians to the south east, and the Northern Highlands to the north west.  

The Glen is a natural travelling route for the A82 and the Caledonian Canal.  Much of the Glen is taken up with Lochs joined by rivers, the canal uses the lochs but the rivers are not navigable.

At Invergarry we turned off the A82 onto the A87 and headed west towards Kyle of Lochalsh our crossing point to the Isle of Skye, our home for the next seven days.  We passed many more lochs along the route, this one is Loch Cluanie

The weather was now glorious, plenty of blue skies and snow capped mountains

 Closer to the Skye bridge the sun was dropping in the sky.

From the bridge we continued north through the village of Broadford before turning west again at Sligachan, and then north westerly towards Dunvegan.  As we wound our way around the lochs we found we had to stop to take photographs of the wonderful views and the setting sun.

 The light on the water casting reflective colours.

And looking back the snow capped peaks of the Black Cuillins

With the tide out as we passed through the valleys the light was very dramatic

And with every turn another view.

We finally arrived at our destination, the Black Shed in Skinidin just before sunset.  The Shed looks out across the valley to the north over Loch Dunvegan, and to the south there are stunning views of Macleod's Table.

Once settled in the wood burner was lit, and we closed up for the night.

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