Saturday 9 July 2011

Arrival at Grummore - Holiday in the Far North and West of Scotland - Day 2.

Sunshine in Scotland. Bit of a chilly wind, but sunshine, no dreich, and great views of the hills around Drumochter Summit.

Views west from Layby 81 - Drumochter Summit

After breakfast and a dog walk were were off, further and further north.

We spotted a red kite over Tore, near Inverness, before striking inland to Lairg.

It feels so much more remote once you get off the double carriageway roads and meet less and less traffic. Shame about the increasing number of wind factories to be seen about. We took the A836 north from Lairg, a single track road with passing places, to Altnaharra, passed land increasingly wild and empty (of man's influence). Past Ben Klibreck to Altnaharra and onto our campsite at Grummore, on the north shore of Loch Naver.

What an idyllic place. We were lucky to get the best pitch on the site, next to the Loch, with uninterrupted views of Ben Klibreck and Strathnaver, and next to a ruined broch.

North east up Loch Naver from our pitch at the campsite.

Later Freddie and I went for a walk around the Grummore clearance village, which is just next to the campsite. There is a waymarked route, but we chose to wander amongst the ruins of the blackhouses and enclosure walls.

Hal and Rafe at the village bakehouse, Grummore

We then wandered further north up the valley of the Grummore Burn, 

Dogs on a rock, near Grummore, with views to Meall a' Bhrollaich (NC605375)

We noticed Heath Spotted Orchid, the first time we realised it is not the same as Common Spotted Orchid we see at home. There were so many in places that it was difficult to avoid stepping on them. We also saw lots of Greater (or Long Leaved) Sundew, we usually see Round Leaved at home.
Heath Spotted Orchid
We followed Grummore Burn, back down to Loch Naver and the campsite.

Grummore Burn, near its end at Loch Naver

Angry skies over Loch Naver

After tea, we had a paddle across Loch Naver, to Dun Creagach Broch on the south east shore (NC604365).
Dun Creagach Broch.

Dun Creagach Broch and Loch Naver with the campsite in the distance, across the loch.

Dun Creagach Broch
 After exploring the broch, and watching some Black Throated Divers, we paddled back across the loch. We could see rain coming from the south west, powering its way up the loch, so it was no leasurely paddle, racing the weather back to the campsite

Loch Naver, looking north from Dun Creagach Broch
We managed to get back before the rain, which turned out only to be a light shower, followed by a bit of dreich. The dogs got a slightly damp and midgy walk around Grummore clearance village before bed.

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