It is my final day walking on Arran. And may be the last for some time, as I must get home for my middle daughter’s wedding, and then be around for my eldest daughter and the birth of my first grandchild.
Luckily, it’s another beautiful day. The bus is full of round-the-island sightseers, and the driver is surprised when I ask him to drop me off on a corner in the middle of nowhere.
On a beautiful, clear morning, I park by the shore near Machrie, and catch the bus back to Blackwaterfoot. The harbour looks very attractive.
Today is a walk of two halves. The first half is glorious, the second half… well, it will turn out to be a bit of a slog. But let’s start at the beginning… Continue reading
This morning I park my car at Blackwaterfoot and catch the bus back to Lagg. The first section of today’s walk follows the road. Great views over the countryside, with Ailsa Craig a constant feature on the horizon.
I decide not to take the first path down to the shore. The official Arran Coastal Way sticks to the road anyway, until you reach the village of Sliddery. Continue reading
The Kildonan Hotel overlooks Pladda Island. In the distance (just to the left of the island) is the misty shape of Ailsa Craig. The hotel garden is dominated by a circle of sculpted stones.
My starting point in Whiting Bay is the path up to the Glenashdale Falls. By the track, a group of four walkers are putting on their boots and strapping on rucksacks. I hesitate, because I hate being overtaken. Should I wait and let them go first? But they spend so long sorting out their kit, I give up and set off.
I’ve just had another bad night, with a persistent cough and muscle pains. So this morning I’ve made two decisions. Continue reading
I drive to Kildonan, on the southeast tip of Arran, where I leave my car in an official car park, which turns out to be a strip of grass by the side of the road. From there, I catch one of the infrequent buses that travels around the coastal road in a huge loop.
Back in Lamlash, and the sky looks ominous.
I take the morning ferry over to Arran, and spend the crossing standing on the deck, staring out into a grey mist whilst being blown about by a howling gale. It’s too dull for photography, and I can barely stand up against the wind, never mind hold a camera.
As we approach Arran, patches of sunlight break through the clouds and I feel a surge of excitement. The island looks beautiful, with huge mountains and a rocky shore. Below is the first photo I take once off the ferry at Brodick pier.
I return to Fairlie by bus. The sun is shining this morning, but the forecast predicts rain later. My plan is to keep today’s walk short – but now I have the extra miles to Largs to do too – the ones I failed to complete yesterday!
Onwards. Along the cycle path. Heading north.
I had a restless sleep last night and I’m not feeling brilliant this morning, for a number of reasons. Continue reading
It’s a dull morning. I park my car in a side road and walk down to the beach. This is North Bay, Ardrossan. A ferry is coming into the harbour. From Arran? The island is invisible this morning, screened by a murky mist.
I leave my rocky perch and begin walking back along the spit of land. It’s time to head northwards, towards Saltcoats and Ardrossan. After spending a morning inland, it’s great to be walking beside the sea again.
The beach here may not be as pretty as the Stevenston Beach, but the sandbank creates a natural warm pool, and it looks a great place for children to play