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It is 30 degress whne we drive south

Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 09 June 2007

Saturday 09 June, it is 30 degress whne we drive south

Wilma, Iain, Luuk, Cathy, Elisabeth and TeijeThe day starts very sunny and after breakfast we sit outside on the balcony that is made especially for the smokers after the smoking ban has been introduced in Scotland. Until then Iain and Cathy mainly earned their money with the pub, but after 2006 the local customers stayed away in large numbers and they had to focus more on the hotel. With only 9 rooms that is of course quite difficult. In the meantime I stopped smoking but I prefer to sit outside, so this balcony is ideal, especially in the company of friends.
Wilma, Luuk, Cathy, Aneta, Iain and Elisabeth Luuk, Teije, Elisabeth and WilmaWilma and Luuk are also leaving today, they will travel to Skye, and we have set ourselves 11 o'clock as a deadline for leaving. Then we know that at least it will be before twelve. It is a lot warmer than the last few days but first we take our time to say goodbye and have plenty of time for some farewell photos.
In the meantime I have also been working: when I wanted to load some bags in the car before breakfast, I suddenly noticed that we had a flat tire. I quickly removed the tire and walked to the local garage. But they did not have time, come back tomorrow ... And then it is very useful if you know some local people. After a telephone call from Iain they insisted that a new band was immediately placed. A big screw had completely pierced the tire. And so we still get away today, by 12 o'clock. We leave the village honking, heading south. The windows must be completely open because it is really hot.
Snow at Fort WilliamWe know the way to the south pretty well now, but we still enjoy the various landscapes. And despite the heat (it is now almost 30 degrees outside) we still see snow on the mountains in the Ben Nevis area near Fort William. Wonderful to drive through the beautiful country of Scotland, with the windows open to cool off!
Bridge at Glen CoeIn Glen Coe we take the one-lane road on the north side to view the memorial erected to commemorate the killings that took place here in 1692 when members of the clan MacDonalds tried to flee Campbells, who killed them on behalf of King William (our own William III of Orange). His advisers used the centuries of enmity between the two clans, but the old code of hospitality, even to your enemies, was broken and it became a national (Scottish) scandal.
However, it is busy on the narrow road and we do not get a chance to stop, another thing that we keep for another trip.
Glen Coe Glen CoeThat the weather is nice and a Saturday is clear from the fact that everyone is out to enjoy nature. Almost no parking places can be found along the rivers, many people are fishing or picnicking. Even though we still have some hours to drive, we are also looking for a quiet place, but we certainly do not find it here!
Waterfalll in Glen EtiveThat's why we decide to drive into Glen Etive, a very long valley south of Glen Coe. Last year we wanted to do that too, but then the road was closed by a serious traffic accident. Now we are warned at the beginning of the valley that there is a running race race going on until 7 o'clock and that we have to be careful when we meet the oncoming riders. We are only looking for a quiet spot where we can enjoy the weather and the landscape for an hour or so and drive on anyway.
Glen Etive Glen EtiveHere too, the landscape is fantastic, but it is busy. Everywhere bottles of water are on the side for the athletes and the parking places are occupied by the police and other emergency services. In the Netherlands such an event was of course already cancelled at such temperatures! According to the thermometer in the car it is now 30 degrees outside.
Deer in Glen EtiveHalfway the glen we meet the first few runners and still we have not found a quiet spot along the water. In the distance we see more people coming and soon we realize that we it will lose a lot of time when we have to drive out the glen behind the runners. We are already 15 kilometers far into the glen, but you cannot pass a groups of runners. So we turn around, apologize to the front runners who now have to make place for us and then quickly drive out the glen again, which takes more than half an hour.
Pausing in Glen LussWe then rush, but slowly and enjoying our surroundings, further south. It is a real pity that this today we have to travel!
A lot further away at Luss we go into the valley with the same name. A glen where we have not been according to the map and at the end is a parking lot near a river where we sit down for an hour. We like to drive around through Scotland, but especially on a day like this we would like to be outside and enjoy the landscape.
Near Largs Near LargsThis time we pass Glasgow reasonably quickly despite the crowds and the roadworks. We have already managed twice to cross Glasgow on a Friday afternoon and you should never do that unless you like traffic jams. After Glasgow we take the coastal road that we have not driven before and at Largs we keep our second stop. It's been half past seven and still nice and warm. The road is a lot busier than we are used to in the past few days.
Oldtimer in LargThe Dutch we spoke in Beauly a week ago thought that there were so few old classic cars on the roads in Scotland. We on the other hand think that we meet them very often. As proof, we have therefore taken this picture in Largs. This year we have indeed seen less classic cars, but in recent years we have often encountered very long lines with old cars, in perfect condition and sometimes on the most remote roads. Usually in a few weeks driving through Scotland we see a lot more than in the Netherlands in a year.
It's pretty late when we arrive at our next hotel, a Travelodge at Kilmarnock. Kilmarnock is not exactly the most charming place of Scotland and Travelodges are usually located near highways. Yet this was the most affordable alternative that we could find here, they have nice rooms and you actually have little trouble with the rushing traffic. A nice, affordable place to explore the area before we have to go home.
After we have checked in I go out with a camping chair to sit outside for a few hours in the setting sun. And I am completely fascinated by the large electricity poles in the area. But more about that later! First it is time for some rest after a long travel day.


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