Sunday, 17 July 2011

Mull and beyond, Treshnish islands

We woke to another beautiful day and after my usual early morning exercise routine (fighting my way back into damp wetsuit shorts), I was ready to head off again. I was worried after a couple of days paddling whether my old joints would seize up in the morning, but it was always good to be back in the boat.
Lovely, clear waters
Ken heading for Inch Kenneth
We started off round some of the little islands in the bay before heading over to Inch Kenneth where we got out to have a clamber over to the old chapel.
In the chapel
More food calling
 Back in our boats, we carried on round the island watching the seals watching us, before crossing back over to Ulva and round to the Boathouse, a lovely little restaurant which has extremely tasty food, large cakes and refreshing beer. By the time we returned to our boats, the weather had changed and was damp. A long paddle the length of Loch Tuath worked off a tiny amount of the calories from our cakes which Iain had suggested we should have because we didn't know when our next cake would be!
Lunch No2
 By now the dampness had turned into steady rain. We carried on to nearly the end of the Treshnish point where we had another break and some shelter from the now teaming it down rain. This was lunch spot No2. We decided that rather than setting up camp early and sitting around in all this rain, we would have another wee detour across to the Treshnish Islands. Although it was raining heavily, the sea was still fairly calm.

Treshnish Isles
More puffins
 It wasn't too long before we reached Cairn na Burgh Beg, the nothern island in the chain, before arriving at Cairn na Burgh More. Both islands have ruined castles on them, so far out to sea, but close enough to each other to almost chuck stones at each other. We then carried on to Fladda, where we stopped for lunch No3. The rain was still pouring down and it was getting chillier, so much so that the storm cag got christened.
Ken getting stuck into the sweets
 We started to head back up past the first two islands before crossing back over to Mull. There was a section of confused water that wasn't there on the way across which made you realise it's not the place you'd want to be with strong tides and wind. We were lucky to have slow tides and almost no wind and it was still a bit bumpy. We carried on round the coast where Iain checked out a cave for sleeping in that night, however he decided against it. There was running water, but underfoot was a bit soft with Doo poo!.There was a beach round the corner with a river beside it. Once we reached this point and unloaded the boats, we had a clamber up onto a little plateau to set up our tents. I'd love to say this was another stunning camp spot, but I'd be lying. The beach was very rocky with lots of smelly seaweed, the little river and camp ground had more than its fair share of coo poo!, on a positive note, the views would be wonderful if it wasn't still raining so hard and the toilets (open field) must have been the prettiest, with lots of wild orchids and primulas around. By the time we had our tea it was quite late, so it was off to bed fairly soon after.

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