163. Torrisdale Bay to Campbeltown

Quite a simple and short day which only involved catching the #300 bus service back up the B842 to Torrisdale Bay and then walking south back along the road to Campbeltown.

The road south

I got off the bus at the Torrisdale Castle Lodge, I could see little of the castle  other than just a few turrets above the tree line. I am confronted straight away by a steep climb up and out of Torrisdale Bay that I had only just descended while on the bus. Fortunately, the searing heat of the past two days had been replaced by slightly more overcast conditions, although the sun was again threatening to break through.

Peacock at Saddell
Saddell Stones
Saddell Stones

Again the traffic is quite light and I was always aware of approaching traffic. The road is not single lane so there is no real need for verge-hopping today. The coast of Arran has slowly receded as I approach the southern limit of the Kilbrannan Sound. The road rises and falls steeply a few more times before dropping down into Glen Saddell. I enter the small hamlet of Saddell, which although quite small has a rich history. I pass Home Farm and immediately recognise the distinctive cry of the Peacock. It was quite unusual to see a pair of peacocks strutting around and perched on the farmyard gate! I make a small detour to visit the ruins of Saddell Abbey. The Abbey site contains the Saddell Stones, now conserved and housed in their own new building. These grave slabs and effigies date from the 14th and 15th centuries and were carved at the Abbey. However, a few of the stones were carved on Iona. There is not a great deal left to see of Abbey itself.

An information board advises that I could access Saddell Beach via the privately owned Saddell Castle road. However, walking further south along the shoreline would be difficult and tough to get back to the road. I learn later that Saddell Beach and Castle was the location for the Paul McCartney “Mull of Kintyre” video.

Kildonald Dun
Hebridean Sheep
Sandy’s Jubilee Beach Hut with Davaar island in the far distance

The road rises steeply out of Saddell and I continue south. I come to Kildonald and visit the Kildonald Dun. A “Dun” is an early fortified farmstead built on a similar line to a Broch. The Dun at Kildonald is quite well-preserved. The road drops down to the small village of Peniver, which is composed mostly of caravans and holiday homes. The road rises steeply again and continues in a dead straight line for a couple of miles. I reach Kirkhousland and visit the church ruins. The graveyard contains a number of very old stones, some of which I cannot decipher. I drop down to the beach by a steep path that leads to a beach hut called Sandy’s Jubilee Beach Hut! I head a short distance along the beach before climbing over a gate and head over rough pasture out to Macringans Point. This small spit of land juts out into Campbeltown Loch  as it narrows between the point and Davaar Island. I spend a good time loafing around on the Point, watching boats come and go. There is a good path from here all along the shore into Campbeltown.

An dull overcast Campbeltown
Linda McCartney Memorial garden

I am actually heading to my B&B now but decide to visit the Linda McCartney Memorial Garden which my bedroom at the B&B overlooks. In the garden there is an unassuming statue of Linda and various information boards about her life and love of the area. Reading the tributes from local people, you certainly get the feeling that she was well liked in the area. Her ashes are scattered in South Kintyre. After a period of quiet reflection I cross the road and enter my B&B.

 

 

 

NB: I also publish all my Scottish Blog entries on the excellent Scottish Hills website, I use the same narrative, but larger photos and a few extra ones. They can be found here:

http://www.scottishhills.com/html/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=23596

Distance today =   14 miles
Total distance =    2749 miles

 

 

 

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