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August so far in the Forces-of-Nature Diaries
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Member#: 6644
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Registered: 27-05-2007
Diary Entries: 1767

19th June 2013
Windsurfing: Gott Bay-Tiree
Wind Direction: sw
Wind Stength: sw
Surf / Sea State: lumpy
Air Temperature: 18
Sea Temperature: 10
Weather: sunny periods
Max Speed: 27.17 (knots - unless stated otherwise)
Distance Covered: 37.77 (Nautical Miles - unless stated otherwise)

June 2013 – Scottish Islands
Monday 17 June 2013 – travelling + little walk – sunny periods

Had a weirdly leisurely start to our trip! We got up about 8 and did our exercises in the garden then breakfast, a bit of computer, loaded a few more bits in the van and luckily a productive visit from the postman who brought my fathers day present from Rob, the game I played with Hannah when we were down there called Lost Cities. That’s great because it will give us something other than Phase 10 to play. We finally left home about 11.30 and went to say bye to Dan. He is back into the swing of work as Monday is a busy day for them but we were able to have a nice chat. On the road and decided to fill up with diesel at Bury St. Edmunds Tesco because it is nearer the A14 than Ipswich or Stowmarket so not so much of a detour. We also had about quarter a tank so wanted to be a bit emptier before filling up so we could make it to Oban on one tank. We filled up and went to do the tyre pressures and found the driver’s side to be down to 27 from 65!! We filled it up but were pretty sure we had a puncture so I rolled it forward and sure enough it had a bloody nail in it!!!!!!! We drove into Bury and amazingly found a tyre place quite quickly but they couldn’t do anything for at least 2 hours and hadn’t got a tyre like ours anyway. Drove on and I saw a frontage for Bury Tyres up a side street. We visited them and were absolutely amazed when a man with a Mohican and tattoos told us he could MEND it!!!! First time ever for that! He took 15 minutes and charged us £12!!! What a result. Not the best of starts to our trip but at least we noticed it at a garage and it was rectified quickly and cheaply. Back on the road and drove up to Cambridge area for our lunchtime stop and then on to Wetherby for a cuppa. We got to scotch corner and the scenery took a dramatic turn for the better. The motorways had all seemed to look the same up until then. We really enjoyed the road that links one side of the country to the other (A66) and as it was getting towards 7pm we turned off at the first turning on the left and were instantly in beautiful moorland. We found the perfect parking place on the side of a very quiet road and walked up the lane and onto a path to the mast at the top of the hill. There are sheep, cows, horses and buttercups everywhere but the most unusual and amazing thing is that there are curlews + babies, Lapwings + babies and Oyster catchers in all the fields! They are waders and always on the shoreline at Levington but apparently they do nest on moorland/tundra. We also saw golden plovers and the most unusual sighting – a black grouse flying!!! Back to the van for a tesco cottage pie (half price of course) tea.

Tuesday 18th June – travelling + sightseeing – sunny :)
Woke up to a cracking morning, sunny and blue

Did our exercises outside – a little chilly and not very level ground but hey! Had our breakfast and set off for the motorway. When we got up near Carlisle we saw a sign to Hadriens wall and because we had such a great time at the wall (although over near Newcastle) with the boys years ago we couldn’t resist detouring about 16 miles to visit it at its nearest point. We had a great time and were pleased we made the effort. The first place we found the remains of the wall was at Banks, just above Brampton. We got out and read the information boards and decided to go a little further to Birdoswald. The wall there is amazingly whole and is apparently the longest stretch you can visit. We had to pay to park but didn’t pay to go into the Fort because basically you could see it over the fence when you did the walk! We walked down to the river, there is a relatively new bridge over the river now then over the other side there is the remains of the roman bridge where the river was 2000 years ago – several hundred yards to the east. We had our picnic in the sun on the grass in the car park, read for a little while then set off back to the motorway. Our next stop was at Loch Lomand! We got round Glasgow relatively well with only a bit of a blip thanks to the gps! It mostly behaved itself just the one blip. Loch Lomand was absolutely amazing but to be honest the scenery all the way up from Scotch corner has been great. We stopped in the same place we stopped last time we came and had a cuppa sitting on the dry stone wall. Carried on to Oban (this bit seemed to take ages!) and got there about 7. We visited the Tesco store and fuel station because you need a full tank before heading for the islands. Again went to exactly the same place as last time to park up for the night just before the ferry over to the island of Kerrara on the Sound of Kerrara. Very beautiful place with little yachts moored including one which arrived at the same time as us. Had sausages for tea and were amazed to find it was nearly 11 o’clock and still really light! A late night considering we have to be up at 4 in the morning to get the ferry!

Wednesday 19 June – ferry to Tiree + Windsurfing :) sunny periods.

Mag didn’t sleep very well, mainly due to my snoring! Got up at 3.50 and was drinking our coffee when the 3 alarms went off at 4!! Drove to the ferry and went into the building to get our hopscotch 8 ticket which had been booked and paid for on the phone. While we were there we decided to book the Tiree to Barra crossing for next Thursday and were shocked when the girl (who looked very sleepy!) said that it was full!! She said she was half a metre short of letting us have a place and that she would put us on first reserve! We went to the loo and decided we should maybe book the next week in case the same thing happened again and she said that one was fully booked too!!!! We could be stuck on tiree forever! We can get back to Oban but not onwards from Tiree then if we had to go back out from Oban to Barra that would cost us on top of our already expensive ticket! She then realised that by moving vehicles around a bit for vehicles which have booked from Oban direct to Barra she could squeeze us on next Thursday but I have got to keep on top of things and make sure we get an e-mail to confirm that and if not chase it up!! We boarded and left the bay at Oban a little bit early. Very dull morning but we stayed up on the top for quite a long while and sadly didn’t see any dolphins this time :( We did see common scooters and guillemots (thought they were red throated divers but now not so sure). We went down and treated ourselves to a BIG Scottish breakfast 6 items of breakfast plus toast and coffee! For £5.99 each

Windsurf report :)

After a good trip up from Felixstowe to Scotland in lovely weather stopping en-route in the lovely Cumbia and having nice afternoon by a section of Hadrians wall in warm sunshine we arrived in Oban on Tuesday evening as the weather was clouding over :( We were up at 4 in the morning to catch the Tiree ferry and were might by our lovely friends Peter and Sally Ling at 9 in cloudy drizzle :( After catching up in their fantastic beach side cottage and with the wind filling in we headed to Gott Bay, Peter was going to kite while it was just windy enough for by big freeride kit :) The sw wind was sideshore from the right which meant you could sail straight out to sea.There was light rain to start but as the afternoon progressed the sun came out making the clear water and white sand beach look even better :) As the wind was coming off the land it was a bit gusty and the sea lumpy but I had a great 2/3 hours sailing out to the open sea past the rocky islands and the ferry jetty seeing lots of good seabirds including Gannets,Red necked divers,turns and Razorbills :) It was really good session with lots of gybing and unusaully for me not much falling in and the beach side turns were fast for me - great fun - top day :) Mag and I then had a nice walk on the beach and then a lovely meal with Peter and Sally :)


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