Hills & Mountains
The Islands: Skye
Low Level & Coastal Walks (South)
*I am in the process of redesigning this section to include notes and many more high-res shots*
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Intro* This section covers coastal and low-level walks in the Island`s southern half from ? desc*, to the Point of Sleat at the extreme south etc. Walks in the northern part of the island etc
Cliff walks included*
Along the Coast from Elgol
North from Ord
Ord Bay etc Potato Shed and the Hirsel
This heron had built a nest right beside the path and had been sitting on eggs. It took off as I approached but kept a wary eye on me while I passed by. I also saw a Kestrel hunting over the lower slopes of hill name?* later in the walk.
Dunscaith (Dun Sgathaich) Castle
Dun Sgathaich Castle, also known as Dunscaith, (much easier to spell!) sits on the west side of the Isle of Skye`s Sleat Peninsula near Tokavaig, south of Ord. The remains date from the 14th century and the once substantial stronghold was probably constructed on the site of an earlier castle or dun. The seaward side drops steeply to the bay and access is via a flight of steps and a protected drawbridge but these were later additions, probably from the 16th of 17th centuries. Much of the bridge has crumbled away leaving the structure in a dangerous condition therefore although access is still possible, it is not recommended.
The bay in which the castle sits offers excellent views across the water to the Black Cuillin and it`s easy to see why this site was chosen. The bay, like much of Skye`s coastline, is also a good place for wildlife watching. There are various legends associated with the castle and it has changed hands several times over the centuries.
The Isle of Rum can be seen in these shots which were taken at sunset.
Point of Sleat
The Point of Sleat is the southernmost point on the Isle of Skye and can only be reached on foot or by boat. The walking route is initially on a good vehicle track followed by rough and sometimes indistinct paths that lead across the headland. The pubic road ends at Aird of Sleat where there is a small parking area beside the old church which now operates as an art gallery. At peak periods during the summer it could prove difficult to find a space for your car here as the walk is very popular.
Head across the moor on the track and as you continue downhill a couple of houses can be seen in the distance. You will encounter a signed path to the Point on the left and this leads over the hillside then descends towards the coast.
Straight ahead lies a fantastic spot. The hidden bay of Camas Daraich (above) just east of the Point is a great place to linger on a fine day and a worthwhile destination rather than continuing all the way to the lighthouse. There are only a couple of sandy beaches on the island and unlike the others this one is often sheltered from the wind.
From the bay a path continues over the heather moorland to reveal the lighthouse and the panorama beyond.
You would expect the Point to be marked with a substantial, traditional lighthouse but the structure here (above) is a small and fairly insignificant affair, really just a navigation light, although it obviously does the job. The scenery more than compensates though with uninterrupted views across to the high Cuillin, Rum, Eigg and beyond. The option of a circuit on the way back is not really practical so it is best to return by the same route.
An alternative to the walk-in from Aird of Sleat is to take a Sea.fari Adventures trip. Itineraries vary depending on seasons and weather but there`s always a chance of a close encounter with nature. Dolphins and whales are regularly spotted but I only managed seals on my trip. For further information contact: www.whalespotting.co.uk.
A seal colony favours the rocks off the Point to relax. This wee guy below was particularly chilled-out. All he needs is a pair of shades. Shags and Cormorants favour the rocks at the same spot. Below: the north end of Eigg from the water. (to edit*)