Places we always meant to go to but never quite managed to visit feature prominently in our blog. There must be at least half a dozen of them if not more. The puffins of Handa Island were recently mentioned (but we made it to Staffa at least!) and then, of course, we still have not climbed Suilven and quite a few other local mountains. All scheduled for the next few months let me assure you.
And then there was always Sandwood Bay of course. Renowned - stunning - about 45 minutes drive from our home and then 4 miles walk there and another 4 back. A walk as flat as a pancake so no excuse really! But somehow it never happened and every year something came up.
Finally, though this July the moment came. Our neighbours were going and asked if we wanted to come. And of course, we would not want to disappoint them. So the day for the Sandwood Bay adventure came this year in early July.A warm and sunny day was forecast so an early start was required and we duly met up at the end of our driveways at 8 am and arrived at a not so packed walkers car park in good time. Sandwood Bay has become very popular over the years so we were glad to be ahead of the crowds and the blazing sunshine!
If there is one downside to this adventure it's that the walk in is really quite boring. No two ways about that. It makes it ideal for a walk with friends though because when you chat and chat and chat some more time flies and it didn't seem to take too long until we started to see the beach on the horizon. And stunning it undoubtedly was. We arrived when the tide was in so it wasn't quite as big as the most impressive photos we had seen.
But by the time we had finished our lunch and started to explore the beach was getting bigger and bigger and the clouds disappeared for good and it was simply magnificent. Even at the height of the day when there were many people it was still a remote Highland beach and we all spread out and it nearly appeared empty. We all found our little corners to explore and splash and enjoy the sand between our toes. The boys played around some rocks covered with bright green gut weed.
I love the colour of gut weed and it feels like a patch of nice carpet underfoot. That is until you hit a wet patch and somehow your feet just go one way and you go another and that was rather embarrassing. It did hurt also and sorry there are no photos of this incident! Many camp on the beach and it's definitely something to consider because once you are there and the beauty draws you in leaving is very hard.
The 4 miles back are therefore a LOT harder (and somehow uphill for parts which you did not seem to notice when you were going downhill filled with anticipation). A short stop for tea & cake helped to break up the return walk and after and we arrived at the car park in the early evening. A most enjoyable day - so glad we finally did it!
Written by Monika Strell on Friday, 25 August 2017.
Posted in Scottish Highlands and Islands beach,