“What’s that burning thing in the sky??!” Oh — it’s the sun. So it does still exist, then.
We jump on the opportunity to do some sight-seeing unmolested by the elements in this rainy, cloudy land, and take off. It’s beautifully clear and sunny, a few delightfully fluffy clouds here and there. We set off back the way we’d come, around the tip of the Trotternish Peninsula, and we enjoy some very picturesque scenery. We can see the jagged purple shapes of the islands of the Outer Hebrides out off the coast, deep blue ocean, and fields of bright emerald grass.
We spotted some compellingly quaint thatched huts (which reminded Katherine of Grug) in a cluster on the drive up the other day, and noticed that it was a museum. This time, we drop in to the Skye Museum of Island Life, and have a poke around. This was a crofters’ village once — it now houses in each hut displays describing the various aspects of life on this island at the edge of the world. It didn’t seem incredibly pleasant for much of it, mostly because of the Bloody English.
It’s late afternoon by the time we turn up the little track leading towards the Quiraing, a spectacular part of the Trotternish Ridge escarpment, and the land glows in that beautiful afternoon light that makes everything look magical.
This is a place of looming cliffs, jutting crags, sweeping mountains, and, yep, sheep. Because it’s so late in the day, we pretty much have the place to ourselves.
We strap on our hiking boots and set out along the pathway that winds underneath one of the towering escarpments.
The walk leads us between two immense crags with views over the sea and the plains of the island, the wind beating at our ears, then northwards into the shadow of the cliffs, the land dotted with rockfall debris and small lochs.
Then we turn upwards, and ascend a ridge up onto the cliff top.
My one-foot-after-the-other reverie is interrupted sporadically by giggles from behind, as Katherine has donned earbuds and is listening to a hilariously poorly-voice-acted audio book, “The Outlanders”, recommended by our friend Keith.
Finally, a long damp trek though marsh and grassland on the plateau brings us back (Katherine, hiking enthusiast: “I don’t know what I hate more. Going up, or going down.”)
Scotland, you do not disappoint.