We left Largs at about 9am, and with our first full day in Scotland, It welcomed us with rain. This was our day of initiation into the Scottish life. We tried making tea to start our day off right in our AirBnb, but the small single serve creamers were so old, they had stuck to the side of the container. Needless to say, our first stop needed to be breakfast.
We left with all of our rain gear on with a few light sprinkles reminding us of what we could expect for the day. We got an hour out on some relatively major roads before stopping off at Frankie and Bennie’s, stripping off our rain gear, and enjoying a full ‘English’. The rain started again just as we were wrapping up, so we got ourselves dressed again, in the middle of the restaurant, and hopped back on. Our later than usual breakfast meant we weren’t planning on stopping for an actual lunch, and besides, we had a castle to visit on our route, so we got ourselves as comfortable as possible, filled up on gas, and prepared for 4 hours of wet riding.
And yes, they were wet, but they were also absolutely stunning! The rain and clouds just added to the magnificence of the intense hills, and sharp winding turns. I literally couldn’t stop videoing. Though I would LOVE to drive that road in the bright and clear sun, I almost loved it more as the main day we had rain, because the steep inclines and declines in the road meant mist and clouds all around us… which was breathtaking…. For 4 hours! This weather really tested our rain gear, with Mike and I realizing that our gloves, though waterproof, did make our hands verrrrry cold after soaking up all that rain, and Paul realizing that he was somehow leaking through right at his stomach. My dad was wearing plastic bags in his boots again to keep his feet dry at least.
We pulled into our castle visit at Eilean Donan Castle, something my dad was really looking forward to. The rain stopped for us as we arrived, and started up again as we left, but cleared out for the hour and a half we walked around the castle out in the open air. It’s probably a good thing I didn’t bring a real camera, because otherwise I could have spent the rest of the day just photographing this picturesque piece of history. The rain started again as we left, but we didn’t have too much farther to go. We passed through some ocean inlets and lochs, and a few more amazing hills before getting close to our night stay. However, the ‘town’ we were staying in (Lochcarron) didn’t have anywhere to eat in it, and because it was Sunday, the town before had only one place that was open… a hotel… with a restaurant attached.
Mike, my dad, and I all had the haggis n mash, and it was delicious, but not a meal, so Mike and I split a cod ‘n’ chips for our dessert as my dad had proper Irish (or actually Scottish) Coffee, and Paul had his second (or third) sticky toffee pudding of the trip. We jumped on the bikes, risking the last few miles without rain gear, and got to our AirBnb stay with April, that had a stunning view of an ocean inlet. We could even see the first part of our road the following day, winding and curving through more of the Scottish hilly coastline. We hung all of our wet rain gear, soaked gloves, and damp shoes around all the radiators we could find, and then shared a nightcap before turning in.
Day 8 Video: