Dunvegan Castle, Skye 57:27.233N 006:36.028W

Frans & Sarah Toonen
Sun 21 Jul 2013 23:14
21 July 2013. S/SE 2-3. Sea State slight. Glorious sunny day - so glorious we put the shade over the boom as we only used the cruising chute. 

We motored out of Loch Boisdale to see if there was any wind and where it might take us. We tried to head NE to make Harris or Lewis but this was not possible under sail so we cruised for 10 hours and covered the 36 miles to Loch Dunvegan on the north west corner of Skye. There is a small Traffic Separation Scheme off Neist Point for shipping going through The Little Minch. We only saw 2 commercial vessels all day and both were on collision courses with us which was very funny in all this ocean. Neist Point is a nesting site for Black Guillemots as there were loads of them all around us. 

Using the pilot book and plotter we decided to anchor near the castle behind Gairbh En island as a couple of moorings had been lain in the small anchorage shown in the book. It was high water when we arrived and so big rocks look small and vice versa. No further to starboard Sarah said from the plotter as it shows land. Sure enough as the tide ebbed a seaweed rock emerged 20m to starboard and when one of the seals had tired of entertaining us with barking and throwing seaweed and eels around it climbed on the rock and went to sleep. To port more seaweed and rock emerged at 30m so we were in a spot which was too small to swing clear. Very scenic as we saw the sunset and then the almost full moon rose behind the castle and all the wildlife finally fell silent. 

In the morning we tried to go ashore but an unfriendly local told us we couldn't use the castle pontoon as we hadn't got a licence and there was no where we could land in the village as it was low water. We gave up and decided to leave as we couldn't risk another night in our tight spot. 

Yes this is Scotland… the long sleeve shirt and hat are against sunburn.


Colours… paint this one Dad:


Night night then...