Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Frosty Walking

It seems weeks since we last had a 'sunrise' - for those who've forgotten what this is, it's an event in which the horizon is visible and the sun comes up from behind it. This morning's was a fairly mucky version, following as it did a night of frost and hail showers, but the colours were pretty.

Better still, the forecast suggested we might have some sunny intervals during the morning, so we set off to walk on Estate land to the east of the Allt Choiremhuilinn....

....following the Estate track from the silage bales about a mile out of Kilchoan towards the frost and hail-covered slopes of Beinn na h-Urchrach. By that time any hope of the sun making its presence felt had long gone: the forecasts at present aren't doing very well. Not that it mattered as this is a fascinating area, being the ancestral lands of the generations of people who lived in the clachans of Skinnid and Choiremhuilinn, fertile arable land....

....which is now occupied by the red deer, cattle and sheep of the Estate. Since the deer are some of the Estate's finest, they're confined by deer fences so, when this small group ran away from us - none too hurriedly - they stopped at the fence and, after moving up and down it, gave up and stood and watched us.

We circled round, following the deer fence, until we came to the sea near the remains of the houses of Choiremhuilinn. From the top of the cliff we looked east along the coast towards Maclean's Nose and, at upper left, the frost and mist-covered summit of Ben Hiant.

Just offshore is the Maclean's Nose salmon farm. The farm has already begun to send off its first crop of salmon, and this was continuing today with the well boat Viktoria Viking alongside one of the cages.

We were out for about two and a half hours, chill walking at times but very enjoyable, especially as we came home to a large bowl of split pea soup.

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