Walking Scotlands Coast

DAY 54 – BALNAKEIL TO CAPE WRATH

DAY 54

FRIDAY 13TH MAY, 2011

BALNAKEIL TO CAPE WRATH FERRY 3 MILES 1.5 HOURS

CAPE WRATH TO FERRY PIER 18 MILES 8 HOURS

MORRIS, DEREK, KEITH, GARRY, JAMES, PHIL, ALAN AND STEWART

TOTAL DISTANCE WALKED SO FAR 827 MILES

Arrangements were made with John Morrison the Cape Wrath ferryman to cross at 0930 so an early start was required. After breakfast Garry and Stewart dropped the rest of us at Balnakeil at 0800 and we walked round Durness Golf course passed Eilean Dubh along the cliff tops then down onto the lovely sand on the east side of the Kyles of Durness. Garry and Stewart who had taken the minibus to the ferry point walked back and met us. We had to return to the cliff tops for the walk down to the ferry. Although a bit windy and choppy the short crossing on the ferry was most enjoyable unlike the 40 minute journey in the minibus to the lighthouse at Cape Wrath. As the military range was not in use our walking was not restricted but we were limited by time to a 1600 minibus pickup .For the first time we would be walking west to east. After enjoying tea and home baking in the lighthouse cafe we set of to walk to Kearvaig bay. From the lighthouse we followed a cliff top path then sheep tracks below Dunan Mor. The walking became much easier on the wide grassy meadow down passed Geodha Glas although detours round one or two gullies were required. Ahead we could see the amazing Kearvaig bay and the aptly named Cathedral Rock. We dropped down to the jetty near Clais Charnach then made our way up the steep slope on the other side. Another gulley was negotiated before we reached Geodha na Seamraig and then a steep drop down the hillside on to the beautiful Kearvaig sands. After a lunch break and a short but sweet dip in the sea for James and Alan we made our way up the cliff edge to Clo Mor and on to Cleit Dhubh ( highest cliffs on mainland Britain) before returning to Kervaig Bay and making our way out to the road. As agreed with the minibus driver we started to walk back towards the ferry point pending his arrival to pick us up. As it turned out some of our group reached the ferry point before he arrived making it a long hard day’s walk. At the pier the ferry was  waiting for us and we were safely back across by 1730.

Summary; A long challenging day to finish the North Coast but well worth it and one we will all remember.

Highs; The ferry crossing with John was great. Kearvaig beach and the rock stacks are amazing. The cliffs at Clo Mor are breathtaking.  

Lows; The less than helpful grumpy minibus driver.

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DAY 54 ROUTE MAP

DAY 54 ROUTE MAP