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Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing


Postby RicKamila » Fri Oct 12, 2012 8:50 am

Route description: Quiraing, hill circuit

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Meall na Suiramach

Date walked: 03/10/2012

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 7.3 km

Ascent: 538m

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The Quiraing. Just hearing its name makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. It throws together everything that Skye is - Magical, Mysterious, Magnificent, Quirky and Wet. The past two visits to Skye have had this included in our itinary, only to be scuppered by the weather. Not today though, today it was glorious blue skies and light winds.

01.JPG
The Quiraing


We drove up the magnificent Staffin-Uig road and parked alongside the two dozen cars already there at 11am. To our suprise, a coffee van was there, making a hell of a racket from its generators. Already suited and booted as the cottage was nearby, we set straight off and followed the track right to the heart of the Quiraing. We decided to do the walk in reverse and come back down the grassy hill, more on this later!!

02.JPG

03.JPG
Looking South

04.JPG
Just stunning


After overtaking a few people and having a chat to a lovely lady who was waiting for her husband and son to return from an expedition off track, we came to the hardest part of the walk. A wet, rocky waterfall. Im sure in the dry it is easy to cross, but in the wet it was a little slippery. Rick almost lost his footing, but we clambered up the other side and carried on along the path.

05.JPG


Eventually we reached the first of the pinnacles. A path went straight up and another followed a landslip of small, loose rocks to the left, climbing on a 90 degree angle to the other path. Kamila, not listening to Rick as usual, went up the path to the left, leaving Rick to laugh his head off as Kamila kept losing her footing on the soft rocky slope. Rick made light work of the correct path and as he got to the top, reminded Kamila that the path goes this way and then got the camera out to record her progress as she slipped and slided her way down to Rick.

(Kamila wouldn't allow Rick to post these photos :roll:)

From here, we got some lovely views of Staffin and across to the mainland. Following the path as it headed to the left, the high cliffs to the left dominated the scenary. Admiring them, we then realised that we would have to climb up to that height to return to the start. Pondering this, we reached a wall where there were a couple of gaps to walk through. We stopped shortly afterwards for a drink and admired the unusual landscape that we were sitting amongst.

06.JPG
Inside the Quiraing

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A perfect spot for a break


After a short refreshment break, we carried on along the path as it climbed up and the views got more and more amazing. Eventually we reached a narrow channel that climbs steeply up and we followed it up to a fence and crossed to the other side where the views opened up to the Outer Hebrides. Rick got all excited when he thought he spotted a submarine in the ocean, which Kamila couldnt see and refused to believe. Rick would later prove he was right when up on the Storr the next day.

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After the climb up the cliffs

09.JPG
Looking down on the path below

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Rick thought he had seen a Submarine out there

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The higher you go, the more bizarre it looks


Looking back down on the landscape we just walked through was amazing. Everything that looked huge down there suddenly looked so small. The views of Staffin Bay and across to the mainland we becoming more and more superb. Rick's camera clicking non-stop. We followed a path along the cliffs until we reached a viewpoint looking over Staffin and the magnificent Table. It looks so out of place amongst the pinnacles and jagged rocks.

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The Table

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Walking further along the path, we took a turn to the right at a small cairn and headed to the summit of Meall na Suiramach. We were the only people at the summit, and we could see other groups passing by along the cliffs, not realising the summit was so close. Deciding to use the trig point as a tripod, Rick set the smaller camera up with a 10 second timer and as he pressed the button to start the timer, ran back to where Kamila was standing, only to trip on a rock, almost lose his footing, but gathering it up in time to pose for the photo. As bad as it sounds, we both wish he had tripped as it would have made a stellar photo. Having a right old laugh on the summit, we were joined by Golden Eagle pair number 2 for the week. These two were flying in the distance, towards Duntulm, just gliding in the breeze. Slightly too far away for any decent photos this time. Watching them whilst having lunch, we suddenly realised that the Outer Isles had disappeared in a rain band and it was heading our way. We decided to head back to the path and start our descent.

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From near the summit


Reaching the path again, we followed the cliffs along until it started heading across moorland and reached a fence and gate. We could hear the generator of the coffee van from up here, it was very annoying. Rick then bumped his arm on a large bolt that was hanging out of the fence post next to the gate. Jumping around in pain, he suddenly stopped and grabbed his camera, the pain seemingly gone, as our third pair of Golden Eagles appeared from Staffin-way. They circled a few times before disappearing.

15.JPG
How can you tire of this?


Going through the gate, the path started to become quite slippery and muddy. Rick warned Kamila to be careful, and immediately as he did, she fell over. Getting up and swearing at Rick, who was laughing his head off, we carried on further down where Kamila decided to slip over in the mud again, cue more laughing. Rick then had his turn to slip, but stopped himself from landing in the mud, when all of a sudden Kamila took a step in the mud on a slope and went straight down and slid for a couple of metres. Rick asked if she was ok, before bursting out laughing at his now mud-covered fiancee. At least she laughed this time. "You're not getting into the car like that" said Rick.

(Again, Kamila won't allow Rick to post photos of this :lol:)

Luckily for Kamila, the heavens opened and most of the mud washed off, but this then caused more problems as when the rain stopped, we were faced with a really slippery descent down a grassy slope. As we were dirty, well one of us was, and wet, we opted to slide down part of the slope. People below must have wondered what was going on. Two grown ups sliding on their backsides down one of the most famous places on Skye, our laughter drowing out the annoying noise of the coffee van's generator. Reaching the original path, we got back to the car and had a coffee before heading back to the cottage to freshen up for a meal at Columba 1400 (Well recommended, it's a Scottish Enterprise charity for young people on Skye. Lovely food, the tea is to die for and the scones, well... just try them!!).
Last edited by RicKamila on Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RicKamila
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby monty » Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:14 am

Great set of photos Rick. Would loved to have seen Kamila's video :lol: :lol: Stunning area. :D
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby Lenore » Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:18 am

Too bad we're not allowed any of those forbidden pictures! We all have those muddy moments...

What a fine day you had! Love the first picture of the table, that dark and light contrast.

Enjoy the rest of your skye trip!
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby RicKamila » Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:49 am

Lenore wrote:Too bad we're not allowed any of those forbidden pictures! We all have those muddy moments...

What a fine day you had! Love the first picture of the table, that dark and light contrast.

Enjoy the rest of your skye trip!


Thank you :D

Got back from Skye on Saturday. Had a wonderful time there, only to be greeted when we got home by half our flat flooded from a leak upstairs that had gone un-noticed for 3 days :(
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby RicKamila » Fri Oct 12, 2012 10:07 am

This is the only one I can get away with posting. Add to the fact her arms, legs, shoes and even beanie were muddy, then you get the picture :lol:

P1010520.JPG
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby johnkaysleftleg » Sat Oct 13, 2012 2:35 pm

Nice report on one of my favourite places in the world. One thing you missed out is the scramble up to the table. Believe it or not it's even more strange and amazing on and around there than the rest of it. My daughter managed it aged 6 so it's not really difficult to get up to.
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby Johnny Corbett » Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:04 pm

Stunning, some of the photos are superb and what scenery :thumbup:
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby RicKamila » Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:55 pm

Johnny Corbett wrote:Stunning, some of the photos are superb and what scenery :thumbup:


Thank you :D
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby LaurenAlexandra » Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:02 am

I'm convinced that it is impossible to visit Skye without getting muddy. Last Hogmanay, I was coming down a slope in the Faerie Glen, and I slipped in mud, fell flat on my back, and then slid at least 10 meters down the hill. The only reason I didn't slide further is that I managed to catch hold of a small plant while going by. Luckily I was wearing my heavy-duty raincoat, waterproof trousers, and waterproof boots, so the clean-up wasn't as bad as it might have been. Of course, the people who were with me insisted on taking photos first. :roll:
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby dooterbang » Sun Oct 14, 2012 11:42 am

stunning walk, stunning area...stunning report.

Was lucky enough to do this in winter in perfect conditions.

The view down the trotternish ridge is something else.
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby RicKamila » Sun Oct 14, 2012 2:23 pm

dooterbang wrote:stunning walk, stunning area...stunning report.

Was lucky enough to do this in winter in perfect conditions.

The view down the trotternish ridge is something else.


Thanks dooterbang. We got the view from both ways over two days, firstly from here and then from Storr.

15.JPG
Looking south 03/10/12

15a.JPG
Looking north 04/10/12
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby skuk007 » Sun Oct 14, 2012 3:46 pm

Fabulous pics Rick. Looks an amazing place best kept for a day like you had.
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Re: Bum Slides and Golden Eagles at the Quiraing

Postby ChrisW » Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:54 pm

wow - beautiful photos RK, love the fun slip slide ending though I do think we need to see the pics :lol:
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