A Life in the Slow Lane


Today could have been one of those depressing days in Basil were it not for the weather forecast. The temperature barely reached 7 degrees and the rain scythed down all day dropping as much rain, in a day, on Basil as he would normally experience in a month back home. Luckily we could see from the weather forecast that it looks as if we will have at least seven successive days of good weather once we reach the Outer Hebrides.

Last night I realised that we might be able to move our ferry booking forward by going to a different port on Harris instead of North Uist. There are two different destinations on the Outer Hebrides from Skye and after a quick call to the ferry operator, CalMac, we were able to change our booking from Wednesday to Tuesday. So we will now be starting from 42 miles north of our original destination, but since the best beaches appear to be on Harris it might be a better place to begin our exploration, but it might mean we miss the most southerly of the Outer Hebrides if time does not permit.

With another day of wet weather, we spent the morning on the campsite with me writing up all the campsites and wildcamping stops in the Outer Hebrides in old fashioned hard copy, because mobile coverage and wifi look as if they will be at a premium. The Outer Hebrides pages of my map book are now covered in, hopefully decipherable, squiggles denoting campsites, wildcamping spots and toilet emptying facilities.

We then made our way back to Portree and filled Basil’s fridge, freezer and cellars to the gunwales with food and more importantly with drink, to keep us fortified while we intrepidly explore the outer limits of our lovely islands!

Kilt Rock

After having emptied Skye’s Co-op of red wine we decided to explore the Trotternish Peninsular which extends northwards from Portree. It is supposed to feature some fascinating geological phenomena resulting from volcanic activity which formed this area millions of years ago. There are famous pinnacles of rock, which were hidden from us by the weather and spectacular cliffs, which we were just about able to see through the rain.

Mealt Falls

We were, at the same time, also looking for a wildcamping spot for the night. We explored half a dozen, having nothing better to do, before finding a lovely small area, at the end of a road, overlooking a rocky beach, some cliffs and a small jetty (57.648619, -6.409501). A Dutch van was already parked up and we joined them. It was only when we had got Basil set up that I read on one of my apps, conflicting reports about whether motorhomes were welcome. One review said locals had told them they could stay overnight and another said locals were not happy that motorhomes were blocking access to fields and the jetty. We shuffled a bit to ensure we were not blocking either and are hoping we will have a peaceful night. There is an official rubbish bin and picnic tables here so it would seem to indicate we will be alright.

View from Basil’s Wildcamping spot

It is now 6.30 pm and the rain has finally stopped, the sun has broken through and we can see the Isle of Lewis across the sea. This looks like the start of some lovely weather, which if it is should show the Outer Hebrides off in their best light.

Sarah enjoying the excellent weather at “our” jetty.

There will probably be no blog tomorrow because our ferry leaves at 6.30 pm and after that it will depend on connectivity.