Eager to get on the water, after a stormy few days, Sunday provided a favourable forecast. The choice of route was to set off from Dunoon and head to Loch Goil or to the top of Loch Long.
An 8am start allowed time to get fuel and be on the water by 08:30hrs. Parking at Port Riddel and wheeling the boat down the ramp to the slipway, some of the concrete slab that forms the running surface blown in past storms easily negotiated. The slipway, was exactly that! Due to the low tide the full length of the ice like slipway had to be conquered, resembling Bambi on ice the boat was not so gracefully launched.
Leaving Dunoon behind we passed by Kirn and Hunters Quay before passing the mouth of the Holy Loch.
Onwards to Blairmore, passing the refurbished pier we headed for Ardentinny
From here the coastline changes, swapping the C9 road that ran adjacent to the shoreline for a rocky coast laden with forests on the steep slopes. There’s some old buildings hiding in the woodlands, highlighted by the remainder of a pier on the shoreline.
The buildings, one of wooden structure the other of concrete lie open to the elements. The buildings were there to house (ironically) the workings of an anti submarine boom circa WWII .The large winches and associated workings partially remain today. Click HERE for further detail on when I walked to the station from Ardentinny.
The water remained glass like for our onward journey, the Police launches showing no interest in our puddle jumper.
Turning left to enter Loch Goil, we passed a seal on the rocks, it like the Police showed no interest in us. Another point of interest is Carrick Castle. It’s been under restoration as a dwelling, however there’s been little progress in the last decade.
Moving up the loch, we passed The Lodge, you may recognise the tree house from the Visit Scotland ad that was aired a while back, very impressive.
After acting like the the paparazzi we made our way to the head of the loch, checking out the local pontoons. One at the foot of Corrow next to the boat storage with Beinn Bheula in the background, the next within the Lochgoilhead Village, handy for a stop off at the Goil Inn or Post Office should you wish to send a postcard.
Heading out on the eastern coast, the scenery was fantastic, flanked by the sheer forest slopes perched on rocks. We had planned to return to Dunoon from here, but lunch time was upon us, so a trip up Loch Long to the Bothy was in order.
Sitting opposite the Finart Oil Terminal, Mark Cottage provides vistas to something different.
Once we’d had lunch we headed back to Dunoon, roughly taking 45mins at a leisurely pace.
Managed to cover 36 miles in a morning, taking in lots of scenery spotting seals,shoals of fish, herons and porpoise…..what’s not to like!