Day 10 – Applecross and the Pass of the Cattle

A busy day today!

Waking up on the beach at Applecross we assessed todays weather conditions and as it was looking fairly pleasant we packed up and drove a short distance down the road to the village shop to get a few bits and bobs.

From here we continued down towards Toscaig for a walk that visits the coral beaches. Parking on the side of the road, this short walk starts of by strolling across the hills looking out over the sea towards Skye.

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It then drops down through some woodland where the track forks and we turned right towards Ardban. Soon you come out onto the headland where the path pretty much dissolves away and you can pick you own way around the coast line.

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We stopped for a while on the first of the beaches where the sand is not really sand at all, but made up out of shell and coral (although not actually coral it looks very much like it).
I did some shell collecting, Lee spotted some seals (we think). Then we head on around the coast line, back to the cottages that are perched there on the end. You can really tell that a lot of the rocks here are volanic too.

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The walk continues, following the coast and eventually goes through another wooded section were another beach comes into view, with a fanastic backdrop and bright turquoise water.

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The footpath then joins the track to Colliegillie which you can turn right and walk down to the coast on or left to continue the walk round.

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From here following the track away from the sea bring you back to the original fork in the road from earlier.

As this walk is around 2 hours long, it was about lunchtime back at the van. The sheep clearly agreed as they, most of them heavily pregnant, waddled enthusiastically after this car that obviously carried food.

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We decided to drive back towards Loch Carran and over the Pass of the Cattle again, this time planning to stop and enjoy the views as the weather was better.

The ascent from Applecross side is less demanding as the road rises more gradually to the top. We ate our lunch, some kind of frittata made of last night leftovers, and then headed up to the mast that’s visible from the car park for views of the top.

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We were only planning to walk to the top for a view, but once up there we decided to walk further heading out along the ridge of Sgurr a’ Chaorachain to the cairn at the very end.

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The weather did descend on us half way along, wiping out Skye and half of the mountains in front, but fortunately the view was still worth the trip out.

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You get some idea of the road Ruby managed to climb yesterday

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We caught up with a man who was doing the same walk and his dog Toby, who we chatted with as we climbed the final ascent. He kindly took a photo for us, and also pointed out the names of several mountains and islands around us, including an extinct volcano.

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We then headed back along the ridge, weather blowing past us as rain washed over the mountains on.

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Next was the descent down the pass, and after the other side and the lingering smell of burning brake pads I was slightly wary of the very steep road. However it turned out to be no problem, and we wound our way back down towards Kishorn.

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Safely back on slightly more level land.

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Planning to camp near Loch Carran, so as to be near a few walks we liked in the morning, weather permitting. We nearly ended up staying on a campsite for the first time. Called Wee campsite, just behind the village, it had hot showers, drinking water and other appealing things which can be hard to come by. Sometimes you just want to be able to stop, not drive around endlessly for a parking spot. Unfortunately there was only 3 hook up points and they were all taken, which made paying for the spot seem a little pointless. We therefore headed down the loch and found a spot to park up by the railway line.

Another shameless night of cheese ensued…

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