Friday, 12 November 2010

Arran re-visited, part one

As you probably know, Sue & I went to Arran in March 2010 for a week. MARCH!!!!!! That's what all our friends said, but go we did, and we had SUCH a fantastic week, in all ways, that we instantly booked to go back in November. Oh, we knew we'd had a 'charmed' week, and so we were just going to take what we were given this time, weather wise. You can see the images of that week here, if you've not already seen them;
The weathermen and papers said that October/November would be a great time to take a holiday, as we were going to get a late Indian summer.

That's the alarm bell ringing!!! Of course, we expected a day or two of rain, but to be honest, there wasn't a day or night went by that it didn't rain at some point. Sometimes REALLY heavy, and sometimes a persistent drizzle This being said, it really didn't stop us enjoying the holiday, and we had the foresight to book a cottage instead of going B&B. That way, if we DID get rained off, we had the run of the whole place, rather than just one B&B room.
This decision was a Godsend!
Well, the lack of good light has really made me unhappy with a lot of the pictures. I often ended up with a dark image, drab colours (that the eye saw as AMAZING colours), or a flat, uninteresting sky. I have tried to choose the ones I think are not too bad, and I hope you enjoy them.
This was the scene as we set off on the ferry from Ardrossen.
A lot different from the snow-mantled vision we saw last time!

As we neared Arran, we could just see Holy Island in the murk.
A very rare sight this holiday, a fairly clear sky, so of course, good light for a picture.
This is the patio of Glenbank cottage;
That decking would see some serious bird and squirrel action over the coming week.
For now though, time to settle in to this lovely cottage. The rates are really good out of season, and one HUGE plus - NO midges! Marion, who owns the cottage, had left us a super 'welcome' basket, with Arran cheese, oatcake biscuits, CHOCOLATES, and a really tasty chutney to go with the cheese.
This was 'our' robin. He soon let us know he was there, and by the end of the week, we'd see him hopping into the kitchen to check for hob-nobs (his favourite).
But first, a walk outside to the small harbour. We really were a stones throw from the sea, and the view from the cottage windows, all of them, was just to DIE for!
The figurehead on this ship was just one of many works of art created by Marion's husband, Marvin.
His work is amazing, and prolific. Have a look at it here;
Another strange feature of Corrie are these concrete sheep (nothing to do with Marvin this time). Someone had the idea of making the boat ties more interesting.
(Notice the black sheep, facing the other way - brilliant!)
So, due to early rain in the morning, the next day we had a late start, & decided to go and see two things we'd missed last time. A famous waterfall (good, after all the rain), and the 'Giants graves' on the hillside above Whiting bay. This was the not-too-bright view we had as we started off.
This would be a great place for a picnic on a better day. This is Holy Island & Whiting bay.
All the info' on the giants graves - I hope you can read it ok.
We certainly had a really strange feeling, standing in the same place as those Neolithic people.
This was the entrance to the graves. It felt quite macabre as I passed through the 'gates'.
This was the other grave, much smaller.
Looking from one grave to the other.
It was quite damp up here, and there was a lot of fungi to be seen.
This was such a beautiful and delicate specimen, I don't know it's name though.
Some others, close by.

After spending a good while looking around the Giants graves, we made our way back down the hillside to re-take the path to Glenashdale falls. This is the very winding path we came up/went down.
Sue & I LOVE these woodland paths, even better for the carpet of pine needles that hushes all sound, and makes for such a soft walking platform.
Quite quickly, we reached the falls. We could hear the water thundering over the edge long before we reached them. There was a purpose-built viewing platform for visitors.
This view is from over the other side.

A lacy version of the falls.
This is the tumbling burn that feeds the falls. There was a super picnic place here, complete with table, but a family had beaten us to it, so we decided to press on for our lunch.

More fungi to see as we walked on. This was so delicate and white, the light passed through it.

This is called 'antler fungi', for obvious reasons.
It's only tiny, but there was lots of it spread over the forest floor.
This was where we decided to have lunch, JUST before the rains came.
This is all that remains of the once proud fortress.
We pressed on through the forest, passing many small waterfalls.
At this point, as we were descending, I looked right and saw a small red blotch.
Was it a wrapper, a can, a plastic tub, OR was it what I thought it was.......
YES - a GREAT example of the fly agaric fungi.

More to follow soon.................


  1. Ooooh that holiday looks hard work to me, yes I know you LOVE it - but all those hills :-((

  2. HAHAHAHAHAHA! One mans meat......... :-)