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Central Scotland, Carrbridge, Gairncorm Mountains


Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 22 September 2001

Saturday 22 September, central Scotland, Carrbridge, Gairncorm Mountains

Carrbridge Boat of GartenBecause we skip Skye this time, we have more time for our other plans and can have a more quiet day. A relatively short trip with some special places we want to see. Time to visit the Grampians. From Inverness we take all small roads when possible and avoid the highway. Our first stop is in Carrbridge. The old bridge, which still lies unused over the river, dates back to 1717. It was build after 2 men had died at the place where the villagers normally waded through.
Loch GartenBetween Carrbridge and Boat lies the Landmark Centre, a historical park with nice multimedia presentations about history and nature. As a travel guide says: 'it has more taste than many of these sorts of places have', which says enough.
The area in Spey valley is covered with woods, certainly around Loch Garten, a beautiful area to make long walks. We drive around the lake on the small tracks which can be followed for kilometers with all different kinds of landscape.
Cairngorm MountainsSubsequently we go to the south, to Glen More Forest Park, situated centrally in the Grampian Mountains, near the Cairngorm Mountains, which is a expanding winter sports area in Scotland. Via Coylumbridge we drive up the mountain.
But there isn't much to do at that time of year, except for taking a walk. We had hoped the cable railway would run, but it is very quiet except for some hikers.
Ruthven BarracksNear Kingussie, we see a hill with a few ruins. It appears to be Ruthven Barracks, a place which once played an important role in the Jacobite rebellion. It often happens to us: running into unforeseen castles, ruins or other places of interest.
Our castle near Ardverikie estateAnd it happens again! At Newtonmore we turn onto the A86 towards Fort William and somewhere near Strathmashie House we see this beautiful, tiny castle, at the entrance of an apparently much bigger estate. It is love on first sight: this should be our house! But no sign 'for sale', unfortunately. (To reveal already the news: in 2003 we stay a few days at this place!)
Loch LagganWith regret we drive on, along Loch Laggan, an artificial lake, build in 1934 to supply water to the aluminium plants in Fort William.
At Spean Bridge we return to the Great Glen, an important geological fault where 4 lochs lie behind each other from south to north, Loch Ness being the most famous of them. A canal joins the lochs together, thus giving ships an alternative route instead of the way around the treacherous north coast of Scotland, to sail to the Atlantic Ocean.
Bar in DrumnadrochitAfter Loch Lochy and Loch Oich comes Loch Ness, where we visit our favorite pub in Drumnadrochit. We skip the monster exhibitions this year. Next year, Teije can have a swim in the lake, so Elisabeth can provide photographic prove that the monster really exists.
We take small side roads to return to Beauly. We have a short rest after a substantial meal and then go to the pub. Officially it closes at 12, but we sit there and talked with Iain and Cathy for a few more hours. It is always very pleasant to talk with these nice people.

 


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