Thursday, 22 October 2015

Great expectations dashed on Gigha

In comparison to the wonderful west coast of Gigha, I found the north-east coast a bit lacking, though Douglas captured some nice images. Open bays and fish farms charaterise the paddling until Ardminish Point is reach, where interest really picks up again.

In order to reach the focus of our immediate interest we needed to adhere to the Calmac timetable, so that we didn't cross ahead of the soon-to-depart ferry MV Loch Ranza.

We got a cheery wave from the bridge as the Loch Ranza headed off on her crossing to Tayinloan....

...and once she was clear we crossed astern of her and headed across Ardminish Bay, stomachs fairly rumbling.......

..towards The Boathouse cafe bar.  Douglas had been regaling me with tales of how good the seafood was, and in particular the lobsters for which Gigha is renowned.  As we approached, we could see that the lights were on and the door open...we were virtually salivating at the thought of a freshly cooked lobster, perhaps accompanied by  a chilled sports recovery drink.  We were able to paddle right up to the door of the place and land on a small beach of white sand - this was perfect!

Oh no!

We'd missed the season by just one single day; the owners had closed up and gone on holiday, leaving the maintenance crew sprucing up the decking and patio area. Somehow our wraps, humous and cheese weren't quite compensation, so we also consoled ourselves with a small Jura to deaden the disappointment......

...and after eating paddled on south, thankful that we had an evening meal to cook at our camp.  The group of tiny skerries at Port an Sgiathan (Port of the Shield, or Wing) gave some beautiful paddling in clear, shallow water.

Our passage was watched by a couple of curious locals; we tried hard to put thoughts of Gigha steak firmly from our minds!.....

...concentrating instead on the seabed beneath our kayaks (hoping not to spot a lobster scuttling away!)

Soon enough the light breeze pushed us across the channel and back to our camp on Cara, where we of course repeated the correct form of address to the Brownie.

The previous evening a stunning moonrise had marked what we took as the Brownie's blessing; this evening no sooner had we landed than a shaft of brilliant sunlight broke through the clouds and lit up the beach and our boats.

It was the only sunlight we'd seen all day and shone in a direct line across the beach, our boats and over to the Kintyre shore - surely the Brownie's approval?!


  1. Such brilliant rays of sunlight illuminating two waiting sea kayaks? Yes, clearly it was..."approval". :) Warm wishes.

  2. We certainly hoped so D & J - it pays to stay on the right side of the Brownie!


    Warm wishes

  3. Some nice sunlit shots. Always a letdown when you have been looking forward to a meal and the place is shut or too busy.

  4. Thanks Bob - it would have been nice to have had a pub meal, but it was always a bonus rather than a part of our plan (fortunately!)

    Kind regards