2010-05-05-scotland-westcoasttour_(kyle-ullapool)

My stay in Kyle was a little odd. I found a delightful B&B with a real open fire. But it had the strangest TV setup I have ever seen. The TV in the bedroom would only show the one channel and that was whatever was selected on the TV in the lounge. Still a nice lady runs the place and I did fix her broadband before I left. I had been given instructions to visit some place north of here.

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p5050038 OK so I headed off along the unlisted road heading north from Kyle. It took me a while to get to Plockton. So I parked up and took a stroll and some photos. This I think is loch Carron.
p5050039 The tide was out aparently
p5050040 It's all very nice which isn't too much of a surprise as this is all National Trust property.
p5050041
p5050042 The village itself is little more than a row of buildings along the waterfront.
p5050043 and some touristy stuff
p5050044 The view is the best bit I think. Not much else to say about the place so I back tracked to the through road and headed east to the A890 and then A896
p5050045 At the head of Loch Carron there is a single track road that mainly follows the coast. It is marked as a tourist route so I took it. It's all very rugged and I was taken by this stream and stopped for a walk.
p5050046 Looking back towards the loch. As you see the road has already climbed quite a way.
p5050048 I found some very nice little purple flowers. The 10p is mine to show the size.
p5050049 Another
p5050050 same one from round the side. No idea what they are.
p5050051 Treading carefully along the rocky and boggy path this lichen caught my eye.
p5050052 The 5p is mine for scale. It looks like it is flowering but the red dots are not flowers but apear to be modified lichen. I wonder if they are fruiting bodies?
p5050053 This is about as close as I can get with my ikkle camera.
p5050054 Again it's a glacial valley and the hills rise well above the clouds.
p5050055 Seeing the clouds rolling in I decide to get back to the car while I'm still dry.
p5050056 The road soon goes up a lot more.
p5050057 up into the clouds.
p5050058 Here I got a nice pic of the cloud just moving in on the hillside. In a couple more mins there was nothing but cloud.
p5050059
p5050060 Looking back I see that the cloud line is now below me.
p5050061 This doesn't really tell the tale that these two streams are falling several hundred feet into the valley.
p5050062 I think that various lichens have stained this rock. It was very smooth to the touch. I had stopped here as I couldn't see past the end of the car bonnet.
p5050063 Much further on and back down at sea level. This is Applecross Bay.
p5050064 It has a layby and a bin
p5050065 a car park for the heritage centre
p5050066 but no herritage centre could be seen.
p5050067 Some way further I was struck by this waterfall. Completely natural but with such lines you could think it man mande.
p5050068 The road soon rose back to the top of the hills again. There is such a feeling of desolation.
p5050069 Apart from the wind there is not a sound.
p5050070 Here Loch Torridon can just be seen.
p5050071 Here Loch Torridon can just be seen. but a bit better
p5050072 Here Loch Torridon can just be seen. but a lot better
p5050073 It stil gives me a strange feeling to be on solid ground and able to look down on the clouds
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p5050075
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p5050077 This was one hell of a steep road.
p5050078 and then along came the town of Shieldaig. Time for a rest and some refreshment.
p5050079 the island in the bay
p5050080 across the bay
p5050081 the pub for lunch. What! they stopped sereving food at 3. What time is it now. I've clearly been having far too much fun.
p5050082 My next stop was just off the A832 by Loch Maree. There I saw yet more pretty flowers.
p5050083 I'm getting the idea that I don't need to know what they are to say they're pretty.
p5050084 The place is Victoria Falls. Not as impressive as the one on the Nile but far enough.
p5050085 Sadly the path stopped here (dammed Elfen Safe Tea) or I would have gone a bit further up for better shots. I kinda like water.
p5050086 Looking with my back to the falls I can see over Loch Maree
p5050092 Some way further along the A832 a few miles east of Dundonnel is this quite impressive river.
p5050093 Did I mention I like water.
p5050094 Especially when it's moving or falling.
p5050097
p5050101 And as night falls I hunt for a bed for the night. I find one here in Ullapool. Funny place I went to several places with vacancies but they wouldn't take me in as I was alone even though I was willing to pay a double rate. This place was far more accomodating. Had TV and wifi and a smashing breakfast.
p5050102 The view over Loch Broom was most pleasing.
p5050103 In Ullapool town itself down by the harbour.
p5050104 The ferry quay.
p5050105 See I said it was Ullapool
p5050106 Looking back along the main street that is on the quayside.
p5050107 and again.
pic-0029 A roaring fire.
pic-0030 In a tastefully set out lounge.


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