Highland Roads

This entry is from when we were on our way to the Isle of Skye. Ever since I discovered photographs of the island on the internet and mentions of it in books, I’ve wanted to visit and spend some time discovering all the wonderful delights it has to offer.

Some people are beach lovers, and I do like the beach, but if I had to make a choice between the two I would choose a broody, misty island on the coast of Scotland to spend a nice holiday. I guess it’s just in my Scot/Irish blood to want to be where my ancestors raised their families, eventually emigrating to North America.

After spending the night sleeping in fluffy beds in the little village of Sheildaig, we drove the Western Ross Coastal Road yesterday. It winds high up thru the highlands on a single lane road. There were several drop-offs that made us nervous, but we made it. The road was almost vertical at times as we climbed in Caroline’s tiny car. We made it to the top and found a stone bench cut into the mountainside with a stone floor where the mountain range before us was carved out and labeled like a map.

The snow lay in patches although it was warm, and we saw cairns other travelers had built upon their arrivals at the top. We collected our own rocks and built a cairn far away from the others, on top of a large boulder. The sun was bright and we basked in it for a while, enjoying the wild and unrestrained beauty of the highlands.

I did not realize how high up we were until we began making our way back down. Again, the road was steep. After another hour or so, we made it to the bottom and took in the view of the loch nestled between the craggy mountains.

When we were high up in the mountains, we came upon a herd of Highland Coos. They came so close to the car, we could almost touch them. Their fur is reddish blonde, its color burning bright in the afternoon sun. Their faces are sweet. They ignored us mostly as they crossed the road in front of the car. I’m sure they are used to drivers stopping and snapping pictures of them.

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