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Harris: first impressions [May. 17th, 2015|09:48 pm]
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Despite alarming us with reports of high winds and an amber alert (risk of cancelation) the ferry from Uig to Tarbert - from Skye to Harris - was only a little delayed, and the crossing was perfectly smooth and comfortable. We sat in the observation lounge of what is, by Orcadian standards, a large and modern ferry, and drank surprisingly drinkable coffee and watched the islands come and go in the mist.

It's a pleasant drive from Tarbert to Leverburgh, where we are staying (in Sorrel Cottage). At first the scenery seemed very like that of Skye, without some of the grander flourishes, but then I began to see diferenes. We drove through uplands in which brown heather and grey stone were woven together like tweed, dotted wih mirror-like pools of water and finished off with a single button, a discarded hub cap propped against a boulder. At the far side of the island, the mist thined, the sun began to gleam on pale sands and a sea like turquoise satin.

It looked tranquil and mild - then it unleashed a sudden squall of rain, just as we arrived, and we scurried into Sorrel Cottage, deferring unloading the car until it stopped - which was only ten minutes. Since then it's been a fine sunny evening, with a chill wind. No-one seems certain what this means for sailing to St Kilda tomorrow, but we've been told to assume we will go, and to be down at the pier at 7.45. So it's an early breakfast tomorrow and an early night tonight.

[User Picture]From: sartorias
2015-05-17 09:00 pm (UTC)
Pictures, I hope!
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[User Picture]From: durham_rambler
2015-05-18 07:42 am (UTC)
Sadly with a 5 metre swell out there, no trip to St Kilda today. But maybe tomorrow or Wednesday.
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From: athenais
2015-05-18 02:30 am (UTC)
Harris looks absolutely beautiful! Really looking forward to photos and hearing more. What a nice cottage, too.
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From: cmcmck
2015-05-18 10:53 am (UTC)
Don't get Orcadians going on how much better the western isles ferries are (give or take the one into South Ronaldsay).

It's a very sore point!
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[User Picture]From: shewhomust
2015-05-19 04:13 pm (UTC)
Well, for that matter, the Shetland inter-island ferries are a generation younger than the Orcadian ones, so it's not just a matter of west vs. north...
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From: cmcmck
2015-05-19 05:07 pm (UTC)
True, but they're also not the best ships for the job.
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