Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Murty's Mob

Bit of swoosh
Last Friday it was time to start off on our wee Hebridean jaunt. Up nice and early, when we got a message through from Iain, who we were meeting in Ullapool, to say the A9 was closed due to an accident. After a shift of plans we were now heading up via Glenshee, Tomintoul then Granton along with every Sunday driver possible. Thankfully we still arrived in time to swap boats around onto 1 car, get an icecream and still get the ferry over to Stornoway. This was where we met the first of Murty's mob, Tilly-less Mike.
Next day we headed over to Loch Maibhaig to catch the Cuma and meet everyone else. TG, or should that be G & T, Carl and his amazing helmet and Baggy Annie. Along with Murty, that's my seat in the corner Iain, Hubby dear and myself made up the paddlers. There were also a family of three, our wonderful skipper/ cook Murdo and Michaella who kept everything ship shape!
That afternoon, we made our way round past a bumpy Gallan Head to Loch Tamnabhaigh. It was a very blowey evening when we put the kayaks in the water for a very quick paddle down the loch, a blustery paddle across, then a very slow paddle back up, not far, but long enough to build up a bit of an appetite for some lovely nosh and a wee drink.

Launching the kayak
Next day we found out about Murty time. This is about 30 mins after Hebridean time. He eventually emerged for brekkie once we'd all nearly finished. 
It wasn't long before the kayaks were strapped down, the anchor hauled up and we were off, heading out to St Kilda. We were delighted to be getting out so early on in the trip, knowing the whole week was very weather dependant on what we did.

Still a healthy colour
 The journey out was a bit bumpy and a few of the passengers began to feel a bit iffy, with Hubby dear turning an amazing shade of green.
After a few hours of rocking and rolling St Kilda was very clear to see. It really is a hard place to describe, such a massive lump of rock stuck so far out to sea with so many Gannets and my favourite Puffins.

Village Bay
Carl and Mike
In the caves
We stopped in Village Bay, where the kettle was put on before some of us got ready for an evening paddle. Although in the bay, there was still a bit of a swell. We started out towards the shore, before passing through the cut between Hirta and Dun islands. The other side was nicely sheltered allowing us to have a great paddle in and out of caves.
Having a keek through the Dun arch.
We stuck our noses through the arch at the bottom of Dun which reminded us how bumpy the other side still was. This was where we about turned and headed back for tea. What a great introduction to St Kilda.


  1. Truly fantastic place Sarah, I hope the weather was kind enough for you to get the best of it. "Kayak Jenga, Cuma Style" became a favourite game for us, enlivened by the pithy comments from Murdani and Gary :o)

    Kind Regards


    1. Hi Ian,
      I'll need to look into kayak jenga!
      We were lucky with the weather. When I get another 5 mins to myself, I'll put up the next "episode"