North Coast Scotland 500-Day 1
(Above image is a capture of Highland Cows on the road between Applecross and Sheildaig.)
Today was the first day of my 500 mile tour of northern Scotland using the new NC 500 route. I started from Inverness the headed directly west with first stop at Lochcarron Golf Club for a coffee and chat with locals. Their course is 9 holes and entails a convoluted layout including crossing the main highway, apparently a few cars have been hit in the past no doubt prompting interesting insurance claims!
Image below is taken from the Club House encompassing part of the course and the local church and burial ground.
Next, I moved on to first destination of Applecross, a tiny and remote village on the coast whose name has nothing to do with fruit. To reach Applecross requires navigating a single-track back road up a small mountain which features some hairpin bends. However, the elevation affords excellent views.
Applecross village is of the linear type, being stretched out along the coast,.
Here is the popular Applecross Inn (pub with rooms).
After leaving Applecross, I continued north, following the coast road and encountered this sandy beach with views of Isle of Skye mountains in the distance.
Next, I encountered this herd of Highland Cows meandering along the road,
Next, I encountered a small flock of black-ish sheep together with their young lambs. Again, they were wandering along the road, completely indifferent to the traffic.
Next, I stopped for a landscape photograph when I detected a barking noise. Upon investigation I discovered the noise was emanating from a small colony of seals sun bathing on the rocks in the middle distance. See black shapes on shoreline below.
The light conditions today served to enhance the local scenery.
Here is an interesting shot of a flock of seagulls contrasted against the water and mountains.
This is the coastal village of Sheildaig.
Another landscape view with the bright yellow flowers of the gorse bush in foreground.
Finally, upon arriving at my hotel on the banks of Loch Maree I was informed that Queen Victoria stayed here in 1877 and wrote a detailed account of the experience in her journal. Image below is a view from my room.
Overall, a very satisfying and productive day aided by the favourable light and weather conditions.. Looking forward to Day 2.