After spending an evening trying to craft little stories and descriptions to each of the places I visited last week, I sighed when I read back the words, full of nature cliches and obvious comments about the continuous rain.
It was frankly, a bit crap.
Truth is, I’ve worked all 7 days this week to cover staff holidays and my little head is not coming up with anything creative.
So, instead of labouring over it, I’ll instead let the pictures tell my story (I do have a little story to tell, scroll to the end….).
Feeling the force of the elements at Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls
A blustery walk out to Brothers Point
A spectacular, muddy scramble down to Lealt Falls
Hiking out to Rudha Hunish on the tip of the Trotternih peninsula
Tea and Reeses chocolate with a Scottish family at The Lookout Bothy
On that note, I do have one story to tell, a lesson learnt from a tiny five-year-old from Glasgow.
On my walk out to Rudha Hunish, I had intended to stay at The Lookout bothy for the night, my bag packed with my sleeping gear, a tartan blanket and a mini bottle of Talisker whisky for warmth. I was due to work the next day, but I had planned to get the first bus back from the main road at 7.45am to make it back in time for my 10 am cleaning shift.
The path started out straightforward, but as it wore on, I found myself strategising over how to avoid the muddiest parts or working out how to avoid putting my foot into a boggy section. I began to get a bit cross and concerned that this would be much harder for my unstable little feet in the first light tomorrow morning.
Stupidly, I followed some dog walkers in white trainers, who took me down the wrong path and I found myself leapfrogging mossy tufts and having to throw my bag and body over a small stream, only to find, once I had finally consulted my OS map (yeah, I know, probably should have done that straight away,!) , it was the opposite direction to which I had initially come from Huffing and puffing, I climbed my way up the last small hill, and The Lookout finally came into view.
I had already decided that I didn’t trust myself to do the walk again in the dark morning light, and made the decision to abandon my overnight stay. I was feeling grumpy that I had heaved my bag out here for no reason. Why was I giving up on this?
And then, a small rainbow appeared out towards the mainland when I reached journeys end. And I stopped and took a breath. I had an easy search for the geocache placed close to the bothy, with memorable words shown above on the front of the logbook.
I took a nose around the bothy and flicked through the log book of all the people who had previously stayed the night, or two – tales of storms, wild weather and new friendships.
As I sat there, a tiny little girl bounded up to the window, her parents a few paces behind. She opened the door, rushed in, kicked off her hiking boots and jumped up on to the table, grabbing the binoculars on the window ledge. “Mum, let’s look for whales and dolphins!”. In her excitement, she introduced herself as Millie, and I chatted to Mum about a trip to Skye to see relatives.
I commented on how tiny Millie was and how had she found the boggy, muddy bits.”Oh she doesn’t care, she just goes straight through them’”. It struck me what had made me so grumpy was trying to find the perfect ‘safe’ path, the constant strategizing.
Millie’s dad offered me a cup of tea from the little gas stove they had brought with them, and I shared around my favourite Reeses peanut butter chocolate bar. I explained to the family about geocaching and how you can search for ‘treasure’ and gave them some clues on where to find the one near the bothy, much to Millie’s excitement.
And despite not spending the night there, we had created our own story.
And on my walk back to the main road, I took Millie’s advice and strode right on through.
Getting covered in mud, but loving every single second.
Video highlights from Week 3
you have any tips on off the beaten track Skye adventures?
For more on my workaway adventure on Skye: