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Clare
Clare

Day 9: Ullapool to the Isle of Skye

The weather forecast for today had predicted prolonged heavy rain across the entire Scottish Highlands, and sure enough when we woke up in Ullapool this morning that did indeed seem to be the case. It was the sort of morning where you really felt like staying indoors, but we needed to check out of our accommodation by 10am and we also had a fair bit of ground to cover today, so we had no choice but to venture out into the rain.

We were driving south from Ullapool, through a very remote and sparsely populated part of Scotland, on a route which ought to have had amazing views. Sadly, it was so misty and cloudy that it felt like we were probably going to miss most of them. I had also hoped that we would be able to stop at some beautiful National Trust gardens near Poolewe, which we'd visited last time we were in this part of the country in June 2011, but this was most definitely not the sort of weather that you wanted to be walking around a garden in. We decided to change our plans and visit a National Trust waterfall at a place called Corrieshalloch Gorge instead.

Corrieshalloch Gorge is only about 12 miles away from Ullapool and it was in the direction that we wanted to drive in anyway, so off we went. We hadn't been driving for very long when to our surprise, we caught sight of a completely different waterfall by the side of the road. It looked dramatic enough that it was worth making a u-turn and finding somewhere to park and take a closer look.

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After that diversion, it was only a few miles until we got to the car park for Corrieshalloch Gorge. A path led down from the car park towards the waterfall.

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The path took us down to a gorge, with a narrow bridge across it. From the bridge we could look down the gorge and see two separate waterfalls pouring down into it.

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The gorge itself was impressive and the water beneath us was flowing very fast.

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I was a bit underwhelmed by the waterfalls, which seemed a bit on the thin side. I noticed that there was a viewing platform sticking out from the side of the gorge though, so we decided to walk towards that. 

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Once we got to the viewing platform, all became clear! The bridge we'd been standing on was across the top of the main waterfall :) 

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This view was a lot more impressive (even if a bit damp).

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We walked back up to the bridge and I realised we could see the water rushing down from the top of the waterfall.

Once we'd finished admiring the waterfall, we got back in the car and continued on our route, through some beautiful countryside towards Poolewe.

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It was definitely too wet to stop in the gardens there but we were starting to feel hungry after last night's microwave meals, so we decided to stop in the nearby village of Gairloch in the hope of getting an early lunch. Gairloch was a pretty small place, but we followed a sign towards a hotel which looked like it was open and serving food.

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Luckily it was indeed open and we ordered two big meals. Tim had a the roast beef...

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...while I went for the steak.

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We finished it off with cheesecake; mine was Baileys and chocolate, while Tim's was raspberry ripple.

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Gairloch looked like it would be a pretty little place if it wasn't pouring with rain.

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Unfortunately, it was still extremely wet though!

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After Gairloch, the drive continued to be extremely scenic.

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We drove past lochs...

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...and mountains too.

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Everywhere was very atmospheric in the mist, but it would have been amazing in the sunshine.

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The rain didn't let up at any point and as the day wore on there were more and more instances where we just saw water pouring off the mountainsides on the road.

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Eventually we reached a small place called Kyle of Lochalsh, from where there is a bridge across to the Isle of Skye. Islands with bridges might be the best sort of islands xD  We then had to drive a fair way across Skye to the small place called Harlosh where we are staying for the next few nights. 

The accommodation here is really nice. We've got a comfy bedroom...

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...a spacious living room...

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...and most importantly, a proper kitchen :)

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Now all we have to do is hope that at some point it stops raining!



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