Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
gloomyandy
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby gloomyandy » 4 Jun 2016, 10:43pm

Yes I agree about both Berneray (I've also often camped) and Rhenigdale (I first stayed there in 1980 when there was no road!). However I'm told that there has been a lot of work done at Berneray in the last year, so maybe it is better now? It does seem to often be crowded and I've been when it seems to be full of people there for a long time on an extended drinking spree. But having said that I stayed there 4 years ago and shared it with just a few others and had a very pleasant stay.

robing
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby robing » 5 Jun 2016, 7:49pm

Another really good hostel is at the Garenin Blackhouses on Lewis. Only a couple of years old, v nice showers and kitchen, lovely beds and they even provide towels all for £15. Plus you can get a v good breakfast.

rualexander
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby rualexander » 5 Jun 2016, 8:32pm

robing wrote:Another really good hostel is at the Garenin Blackhouses on Lewis. Only a couple of years old, v nice showers and kitchen, lovely beds and they even provide towels all for £15. Plus you can get a v good breakfast.

A bit more than a couple of years old, at least 23 years since I first stayed there.
It has however, been refurbished lately and from the photos on the website, seems to have lost some of its basic charm.

gloomyandy
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby gloomyandy » 5 Jun 2016, 8:41pm

I think this used to be a Gatliff trust hostel. But it closed a few years ago when they lost the lease (not sure why), has since reopened in this new form.

Does anyone happen to know if Tigger (who used to be a regular on here), ever opened a hostel up there?

Colgrenfell
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby Colgrenfell » 9 Jun 2016, 2:10pm

What a great trip - We're just back from a perfect long weekend in Harris - our friend runs the Temple Cafe - Northton Harris (Best place to eat on the island, but then I'm biased!). We drove to Uig - left the car for free in the short stay car park (The lady at the ferry ticket office said they only start to worry if cars are left longer than a month), and took the ferry to Tarbert £6.10 each way with a bicycle. Glorious cycling and weather to die for.. A tiny breeze even kept the midges away.. Came back with tans and pictures worthy of the Caribbean

gloomyandy
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby gloomyandy » 24 Jul 2016, 7:48am

Finally got around to sorting out my photo's of the trip:
http://www.gloomy-place.net/photo/showi ... MG-000.jpg

First few are of my shakedown overnight trip to the Yorkshire Dales.

Vorpal
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby Vorpal » 24 Jul 2016, 8:56am

gloomyandy wrote:Does anyone happen to know if Tigger (who used to be a regular on here), ever opened a hostel up there?

Tigger still logs in from time to time and might spot this.

Her profile says she's on the Isle of Lewis.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

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sabrutat
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby sabrutat » 24 Jul 2016, 8:31pm

Fantastic pics, Gloomyandy! I'm doing southern Ireland later on this summer, and was thinking of tacking on a couple of weeks in NW Scotland. You might just have convinced me!

largeallan
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby largeallan » 25 Jul 2016, 4:22pm

I was one of the poor souls from last year who had to bear a week long grim-fest of lashing rain and constant headwinds from our departure from Wemyss Bay to our finish in Fort William. When all is said and done, I was still smiling through the tears pedalling up the islands :D Thinking of dipping my toe in the 'north coast 500' next year...maybe I'm a glutton for punishment?

gloomyandy
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby gloomyandy » 25 Jul 2016, 4:42pm

I feel for you. Those islands are fantastic, but can be hard work if the weather is bad!

On the North Coast 500 I've just come back from another trip to Lewis (by car this time), and on the way I stayed in Ullapool. The owner of the B&B mentioned that they had been really, really busy this year mainly with folks doing the 500. Amazing what giving something a name and publicity can do!

Fasgadh
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby Fasgadh » 26 Jul 2016, 12:35pm

The Highlands seem mobbed this year. Just back from a trip where mechanicals ruined my itinerary and found getting any sort of accommodation very difficult, similarly getting on buses was a challenge at times.

I am going to have to figure out a way of sticking a tent on my backpacking rig.

rualexander
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby rualexander » 26 Jul 2016, 2:35pm

Fasgadh wrote:The Highlands seem mobbed this year. Just back from a trip where mechanicals ruined my itinerary and found getting any sort of accommodation very difficult, similarly getting on buses was a challenge at times.

I am going to have to figure out a way of sticking a tent on my backpacking rig.

It's peak season, it's always difficult to get accommodation at short notice at this time of year.

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andrew_s
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby andrew_s » 26 Jul 2016, 2:47pm

gloomyandy wrote:On the North Coast 500

<googles a map>
It turns out I did the northern half of that in June (start/finish Golspie, with time in Orkney). Not particularly busy at all, excellent weather, and no midges except at Lairg.
I see they've missed out one of the best bits of road, southwards from Lochinver to Aird of Coigach and east past Loch Lurgainn, preferring the relatively boring main road via Skaig Bridge and Ledmore.

robing
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby robing » 26 Jul 2016, 9:49pm

gloomyandy wrote:Finally got around to sorting out my photo's of the trip:
http://www.gloomy-place.net/photo/showi ... MG-000.jpg

First few are of my shakedown overnight trip to the Yorkshire Dales.


Fantastic pics and v jealous as I did a similar trip in June/July and the weather was awful :(
I did have one good day though and very tough! Got up early and left the Howmore hostel to catch the 7am ferry from Lochboisdale to Mallaig.
Then cycled nearly 60 miles to Kilchoan and got the last ferry to Tobermory!

gloomyandy
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Re: Eight fantastic days - Hebrides/West Coast tour

Postby gloomyandy » 26 Jul 2016, 10:43pm

Yes the early ferry from Lochboisdale is a bit of a pain. Means either a very early start from Howmore, or (as I did) finding somewhere to camp/stay in Lochboisedale. The folks that run the cafe suggested I camp out the back so I was only a few hundred yards from the ferry. Gave me a little longer in the sleeping bag!