Loch Maree to Gairloch

Road running downhill towards loch with dark hills. Approaching Loch Maree from Glen Dochertie The short drive across Scotland, from Inverness on the east to Gairloch on the west coast, is rewarded within the hour, first by the sight of Loch a' Chroisg that runs beside the road, and then by the opening out of Glen Dochertie as it descends to Loch Maree. Near the western tip of this, one of Scotland's most beautiful lochs, lies the village of Poolewe. The part of the road leading from the side of Loch Maree to the sea and Poolewe makes a detour round Sidhean Mor and the village of Gairloch. While the spelling of the names of the main communities is well established, conventions for features of the terrain are far from uniform, which, added to the problems of pronouncing the Gaelic, can be off-putting. Below I have indulged a little in excavating some of these names, I hope this is of interest - or easily skipped. This page has photographs from the road across to the west, maybe showing less of the beauty of Loch Maree than it should, as the shores of the loch are now thick with dense foreign trees making access difficult... Birch tree with fence beside loch. ...on the road before Loch Maree, this birch by Loch a' Chroisg, reminds us of the beauty of our native trees Foreground birch trees with loch spread out and hill beyond. Dominating the south east view, along the length of Loch Maree, is Slioch rising to
3,250 feet (980 metres), here in soft evening light
Group of islands with rocky cliff beyond. This and the photo above show the loch side in 2005 before the trees had grown up obscuring the view... Scrubby foreground with loch and hill beyond. ...however, a contemporary image shows there are sections of the shore which can still be accessed Closer view of the hill with its gullies and the loch in the foreground. The English name Slioch might be a corruption of the Gaelic sleagh - a 'spear'. Wikipedia thinks this may come from the hill seen from the northern side. However, that article gives the Gaelic version as being Sleaghach meaning 'armed with spears'. Looking at this, the southern side, one might imagine those pointed cliffs as being spears lying against the hill's flanks Pine tree with bulk of Slioch in cloud behind it. Proving that the Chinese have no monopoly on contorted pines; while Slioch hides its head Road running down towards loch with wide flat hill beyond. A streak of sunlight crosses Ben Lair to the north-west of Slioch Ranges of low wooded hills with moorland in foreground and two separate houses just visible. Hills between Loch Maree and Gairloch with just that minimal touch of habitation that adds to the sense of space and isolation Hill with light catching its summit. Sun catches the top of Slioch. A most beautiful hill deserving these several photographs, a popularity also seen with travel agencies and tourist boards, but to show that there is no need... Small hill with house at its foot on the shore of a perfectly still blue loch. ...for Munros to offer such beauty, this fine nameless 230 metre hill rises in the morning sun from the land to the
right of the picture which does have a name - Na Doireachan - by Loch Bad an Sgalaig
Hill across loch with cloud on top. Still looking across Loch Bad an Sgalaig, but to the left, Creag an Fhithich keeps the morning cloud on its 737 metre top Loch with figure and steep hills on far shore. A closer look at that cottage shows an intact roof, such buildings are the object of much fantasy Moorland with house and distant hills. And left again, for the crags above the loch at the foot of
Meall a' Ghlas Leothaid
High hill with lower foreground hills reflected in the loch. Creag an Fhithich, now clear of mist, can be seen to be the northern end of Baosbheinn. Now the Gaelic obscurities take over, as renderings of this name vary, for example Bartholomew has Baeisliven Bus Bheinn, and none of them has an easy etymology
- maybe most likely is 'hunting hill'
Sandy beach with two figures. Gaineamh Mhor (great fine-sand) is the name of the beach just to the south of Gairloch village A video clip panning from Charlestown, around Loch Gairloch, to Gairloch Village Sea horizon with rainbow toucing it. A rainbow dives into the sea leaving Skye just visible to the villagers of Gairloch... Wide bay with headlands and clouds reflected in water. A general view of Loch Gairloch from beside the village Heavy dark clouds with light breaking through in the distance over outline of hills. ...And a clearer image of Skye from the same viewpoint The village of Gairloch spread along the shoreline. Gairloch. This name had emerged by the 1840s from the series of townships that lined Loch Gairloch (as opposed to the Gare Loch in Arglye) evidence of which dates back to the 1400s. The mid nineteenth century saw the first road built linking these communities by land to the rest of Scotland, at that time some 40 fishing boats worked from the Loch A grey dull view of Gairloch and the village. Same viewpoint, but maybe a commoner style of lighting! Boats in sheltered area with background of craggy hills. A view from Badachro Bay of the hills behind Gairloch Mist hanging between trees with hills beyond. The Charlestown and Kerrydale areas that lie just south of Gairloch village Trailers... The village of Aultbea on Loch Ewe. From Gairloch the road leads over the hill to the next page which has photos from Poolewe and Aultbea area Two people crossing perilous looking suspension bridge. The next page of the Mosaic Section is headed 'Metaphor as Tension'.
Or go to the contents Go to the contents of the Mosaic Section. of the Mosaic Section.
Saturday 9th April 2022 Murphy on duty ...guide to this site

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