Life at the end of the road

May 26, 2013

Visiting the neighbours :-)

Filed under: animals, boats, daily doings — Tags: — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:28 pm

Pleasantly shattered once more, methinks I felt just like this last weekend, aching all over after a hard weekends graft and certainly too tired to do any scribbling on here the last few nights. I thought I’d better make the effort before it all slips away from my addled brain cells however, much has happened and I need to get it down. Well I’m going to have to have some record for the book you know, this will be the much awaited tome ‘Life at the end of the road uncut’ or possibly ‘the directors cut’. Either way my good friend, neighbour and fellow blogger Bill Cowie will be getting a whole chapter. However that will be at least eight years away or is it ten, I can’t remember if the goalposts have been moved from 65 to 67. Whatever, much as I love my job, I’ll be ‘off like at shot’ come retirement age Smile

A quick recap

Well, more a few pictures really from the last day on the ‘Heb’ for all the ship ‘anoraks’ Smile

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A grey and moody Harris on Friday morning, just like the wife really Smile


Two ships heading for the northern tip of Skye,


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the ‘Joerg N’   and the ‘Mekhanik Tyulenev’. The Russian one having a distinct ‘icebreaker bow’

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The yellow stuff on the radar is the land, the majority of which is Skye, the group of islands near my wrist are the Ascribs, the land bottom left Waternish point. The circle by my head the Heb and the red line the normal route into Uig.

The MV Hallaig may not be here yet but at least the plug has arrived for charging her up overnight Smile

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The other thing of note that greeted me upon my arrival off the 16:15 ferry was rhododendron flowers behind Raasay House. Still a few days behind the ones on Harris but a step in the right direction.

Back home fore 17:30 on a pure peach of a day I wasted no time in conscripting the Dude into helping me cut the lawn for the first time this year.



Then, as a reward because I’m too mean to pay him, we went out shooting, a good ‘father and son’ bonding exercise Smile My dad did it with me, not shooting but poaching trout, I learned to ‘tickle trout’ in short trousers and can still do it now almost fifty years on, priceless memories Smile


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I managed to shoot one pigeon but the rest of the lead went on bottles and much as I tried, I couldn’t face eating the pigeon Sad smile Still we had a great evening out on the hill


though we weren’t alone. The antlers on our resident stag are fair coming on, I just saw his bigger pal a couple of hours ago and his are even more spectacular.



Well, I’m struggling to remember what I did, but this hen laid an egg in a sack in the byre, actually, her and another one lay an egg each most days in the byre. It’s one of those big fertilizer type bags with wood shavings in and they climb in through the top everyday to lay their eggs, this is me sticking the whole camera in there as the hole is tied and quite small.


The ten ‘wee wains’ were out in the sunshine with Ellie and here she is just about to toss one up in the air with her snout!!! I’m not sure what was going on there but he kept coming back for more Smile



This morning was once more, ‘a pure peach’, so after feeding the herd I dragged the boy out of his bed and we set off to visit the neighbours. The tide was high, the forecast good and a visit to our neighbouring island long overdue. I was owing Bill some money, needing more whisky and had two containers of oil to deliver, so off we went.


Easily launching the plastic ‘Pioner Maxi’ down the smooth rocks at ‘Port Arnish’ we headed out of the loch, round  ‘The Aird’  by the Fraoch Eilean (heather isle)



and through the ‘Caolas Fladda’ into Loch a Sgurr.


Map picture

Following the coastline looking for ‘treasure’ brought back many happy memories of fishing for lobster and diving for clams along this rugged, remote and spectacularly solid coastline.



There are no ‘soft landings’ on this coast, the hard gneiss that plunges straight down to ten, fifteen and sometimes fifty meters within a ‘spit from the shore’ make this an unforgiving landfall.


It is however one that has sustained many families over the years with its bounty of fish, shellfish and prawns, Loch a Sgurr has them all.

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It even has an eerie


though I’ve not seen it used in years. Though we were watched closely by a golden eagle whilst in the vicinity and many years ago I was blessed with watching the pair build this nest and raise chicks.

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Also in Loch a Sgurr, or at least near its southern edge lies this precariously perched monolith of rock, that will no doubt end up in the sea at some point.

By just after 10:00am we had arrived at Acairsad Mhor (Big Harbour) and were greeted by a warm and friendly ‘happy new year’ from Bill.




However, that’s going to have to wait, for it’s well after 22:00 now and I’m wrecked Sad smile



  1. Hi Paul

    Love the picture of the charging plug! When do the wind turbines go up?

    All the best


    Comment by Derek — May 26, 2013 @ 9:40 pm

    • More to the point Derek, when will the rest of the boat arrive 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 27, 2013 @ 5:38 am

  2. Grey and moody, eh? A foxtrot and quickstep over at Rasaay House should fix that soon enough.

    Comment by drgeo — May 26, 2013 @ 9:47 pm

    • Morning DrG, a ‘foxtrot’ or more likely a ‘strip the willow’ will be on the cards for Friday night 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 27, 2013 @ 5:36 am

  3. “The circle by my head the Heb and the red line the normal route into Uig.”

    Stop pratting about with that camera and steer the ship! 🙂

    Comment by Phil Cook — May 27, 2013 @ 6:02 am

    • “The circle by my head the Heb and the red line the normal route into Uig.”

      Stop pratting about with that camera and steer the ship!

      🙂 🙂 Ship was doing just fine on her own Phil ‘Iron Mike’ was doing just fine Nautical slang for an autopilot system

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 28, 2013 @ 5:36 am

  4. Hi Paul, Must confess to my “anorak” status….looking at MarineTraffic on a daily basis…How sad…I also notice that the “Heb” is always “out of range”…Have you un-plugged the AIS transponder? lol.

    Comment by Doug Miller — May 27, 2013 @ 8:31 am

  5. Doug – I am another AIS anorak but I wish someone would volunteer to have a receiver around the North West of Skye.

    Comment by Nigel Macleod — May 27, 2013 @ 11:39 am

    • We did but nothing ever happened, maybe we should offer again as the lack of coverage bugs us too 😦

      Comment by Carole and Finnie — May 27, 2013 @ 2:10 pm

      • Hi Carole, yup, we definitely need you to get back ‘on the case’ for all us anoraks, there’s a big black hole out there that needs filling 🙂

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 28, 2013 @ 5:18 am

    • Morning Nigel and Doug, all us ‘anoraks’ should stick together 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 28, 2013 @ 5:19 am

  6. The scenery where you live is so beautiful. Your house seems to be coming on a treat.

    Comment by clunvachieBrenda Menzies — May 27, 2013 @ 9:16 pm

    • Thanks Brenda,

      yes the coastline is quite something else around Raasay and I do sometimes miss my times fishing around it.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 28, 2013 @ 5:14 am

  7. whenever you touch upon your years on the water, watching among other things the shoreline of raasay, i am always reminded of tim robinson’s amazing book, Stones of Aran: Pilgrimage. a cartographer of what i think is now called “psychogeography”, robinson walks around the circumference of aran during the time he lived there. i think you’d love this book even tho aran is very different from raasay.

    here’s the wiki on psychogeo, of which it seems you brits are the masters.

    Comment by Jeannette — May 27, 2013 @ 11:59 pm

    • Good morning Jeannette,

      my you do turn up some interesting links 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 28, 2013 @ 5:13 am

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