After Croft we made our way up to Oban where we would catch the ferry to the Isle of Mull, it was about a 5 hour drive so not something we wanted to do following an all day shoot and our ferry was not until the following day. We decided to head to the Lake District for the night and then we would drive up in the morning. As with all plans, they look good on paper. What we had to contend with was torrential rain and high gusts of wind.
It was raining at the campsite when we arrived so we went to the on-site restaurant in the hope that the rain would stop/lessen by the time we finished…we weren’t so lucky. We put up the two small tents and it took a while as we had to hide from showers and stop the tents from blowing away while putting them up. We got there in the end! I wasn’t convinced that I was going to have a good sleep as I saw lighting strikes in the distance and quite possibly heard some thunder! Fortunately, we survived and packed up the tents after a cooked breakfast 🙂
We drove up to Oban, having short chocolate and cake breaks and stopped eventually in Arrochar for lunch. The drive was supposed to take a good 5-6 hours, however I might have fallen asleep in the car and it flew by! When we go to Oban we checked into the ferry terminal and managed to get onto an earlier ferry. A quick trip to Subway sorted our dinner out and we set off for Mull.
Our campsite is on the end of Loch Na Keal and we managed to put up the big tent just before the rain started. The rain signalled beer o’clock.
On the second day the weather didn’t play ball, it was overcast with showers, but we didn’t waste the day. We went for a drive and explored some of Mull, stopping to take pics along the way.
We had a quick stop in Tobermory to find out where the public showers were and to book myself onto a distillery tour 🙂
On the Wednesday, the weather was, dare I say it, okay. We were out the whole day and managed to see loads of wildlife as you can see below.
The Thursday however didn’t give us as much in the way of sunshine, but we went out and managed to get some more wildlife shots.
My tour at Tobermory distillery was great fun, I tasted 5 different whiskys covering both Tobermory and Ledaig (or Le Check as it’s pronounced) and quite enjoyed the whisky. I preferred the Ledaig 1996 vintage, it is a 19 year old peaty whisky however I wasn’t so sure of the price at £115 a bottle!
On the Friday we headed back to the mainland as the weather on the Saturday was going to be rather wet. With a leaky tent and failing roof we packed up and headed back. We had the idea of doing a little distillery tour on the way back to London way. We stopped at Dalwhinnie distillery and had another tasting, this time with artisan chocolates to go with the whisky. I bought a bottle of a distiller’s edition whisky, one of 6000 bottles, just before they closed for the day. Dalwhinnie is the highest altitude distillery and therefore the coldest distillery in Scotland. We headed then to Pitlochry for a haggis supper 🙂 We camped near Kinloch Rannoch for the night and was attacked by midges, we couldn’t sit outside and drink our beer so had to talk through our tents!
We went to Edradour distillery on Saturday morning and I went on the tour. Edradour is the smallest hand-made farm whisky in Scotland and they have just three people making the whisky. The smell of the distillery was amazing and their warehouse is a building to visit, breathing history in there. I may have accidently on purpose bought a bottle of their peaty whisky Ballechin. Suitably oiled we went for lunch before heading back. It took a good 7-8 hours to get back but we got there. Slept in a real bed for the first time in a few days and well rested for my trip back to Wales.
My trip should have taken 4 hours, but with heavy traffic on the M25 and a section of the M4 closed, it took me 6 hours to get back. Totally worth it though to see the wildlife we did and to taste the whisky I did. I’m looking forward to the next trip up there to visit other distilleries 🙂