Argyll Coastal Camp

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Shewie

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Mod
Dec 15, 2005
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Yorkshire
I managed to get away for a nice break last week with the usual motley crew, I was supposed to be working in Motherwell originally but that got canned, we’d already made a rough plan so the trip went ahead anyway. We headed for a favourite area we’ve visited in the past with lots of scope for projects and exploring, the forecast was for strong westerlies and having been in a pickle here a few years ago we decided early to leave the boats at home.


Thursday 18[SUP]th[/SUP] April

After racing home from work and getting my stuff together, Pete showed up on time and after a quick brew we loaded up my motor and set off north. We made good time arriving at Ibrox to collect Josh just after nine o’clock, it was another couple of hours on empty easy roads before we reached our destination. It was a quiet calm night and the half moon gave good light in the forestry car park, we got loaded up with as much as we could carry, both Pete and I deciding to leave some food in the car for a return trip the day after.
The track was easy to follow without headtorches most of the time, occasionally turning them on for the trickier parts. Progress was good and we reached the half way point in short order, we off loaded the packs and rested by the beaver loch for five minutes. After a short breather we pressed on, coming out of the forestry we got our first look at the sea, lit up by the moon. We followed the track down the hill towards our camp, coming across a number of trees which had blown down and blocked the way, we think this probably happened in the big storms after our last visit.
We reached the area we’d be camping in but things looked a bit different to usual, the site we used the first time we ever visited was a mess of fallen trees, flotsam and detritus , thick knee length grasses and piles of seaweed. The other area we’ve camped in before was also different now, the ground was more rocky but covered in tufty straw like grasses, we backtracked slightly and eventually found a decent looking camp amongst an area of fairly spindly looking Alder. A couple were already blown down and a few were leaning, but it was about as good as we’d find in torch light so we setup. It was late and we’d all had a long day, Pete and I had a quick brew on my meths stove and called it a night.


Friday 19[SUP]th[/SUP] April

I woke up expecting to hear howling winds and torrential rain on the tarp, but instead it was quiet calm and the sun was shining. I instantly thought midges but they were not to be seen, just as well as I’d slept with the bug net unzipped on my hammock all night.



First job was to decide where to put the fire and setup a base, we salvaged some washed up polystyrene blocks for seats and Pete knocked a tripod for the fire.


View south west from camp


After some breakfast Pete and I took the walk back to the cars to pick up the food bags, everybody had brought too much food as usual but my food bag alone must have weighed nearly 10kg. The walk back was beautiful in the sun, life just stirring in the forest right now.












We expected to meet Stephen on the trip but we never saw him, we got back to camp and chilled out for a few hours before he showed up. The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent around the fire having a good catch up, a few carving projects were started and lots of food was consumed.


Saturday 20[SUP]th[/SUP] April

Saturday was another bright and dry day, the wind had picked up a notch overnight but we were all secure in our various setups. During the morning I went for a wander up the hill to explore the old forest further down the point, lots of old chestnut and oak trees amongst the interesting rock formations. After a couple of hours I was back at camp, feeling peckish I knocked up a batch of drop scones over the fire which I thought were very tasty.

Pete making stir fry


Josh crafting a bush


The afternoon was spent gathering up firewood and generally exploring the woods and seashore around camp, the occasional light shower came through now and then so we decided to put up the big tarp for a group shelter. In the last few hours of daylight we decided to take a walk up to the beaver loch to see if we could spot any, there was plenty of sign about, much more than last time we visited but still not a glimpse of the goofy furry dudes. The water level looked to be higher in the small loch and building works were continuing on the dam and lodge, there were lots more signs of nibbled and downed trees with various beavery trails disappearing into the undergrowth.


Sunday 21[SUP]st[/SUP] April

Saturday night was a bit wild, the skinny Alders we’d pitched up in were clattering their top branches against each other, I was also getting bounced in the hammock as my two trees swayed apart occasionally. I laid there listening to the winds coming up the loch and then blowing through the tree tops on the rocky bluff above us, the winds were swirling around and coming from all directions at one point. Rain showers came and went, some more persistent than others.
Waking up Sunday morning it felt like the temperature had dropped slightly, the westerly winds had once again picked up but we were fairly sheltered at our camp. Out on the loch the wind was whipping up white horses, I was glad we’d left the boats at home.



A view of the beach where we’d camped on a previous visit, slimey and not inviting now


Looking south west down the loch, Eilean Loain and the southern tip of Islay on the horizon


In the morning Pete and I went off to explore the area a little more, we headed over the fallen forestry remains until we reached the untouched native woodland. I really like the vibe of this place and I hope to come and camp here one day.





After following the faint deer trails around the peninsular we eventually came out into the Faery Isles




There was a pair of Ospreys nesting opposite to where we emerged from the woods, I tried to get a decent picture but they wouldn’t cooperate.


The Faery Isles are normally a good place to catch a sight of otters and seals but the wind and waves meant that they were all tucked up somewhere cosy, we saw plenty of Canadian geese and Oyster Catchers doing their low level high speed acrobatics.

As there wasn’t much about we climbed back into the woodland and carried on along the point, the deer tracks were becoming fainter now.


I noticed these strange cut marks on the base of a handful of fir trees, not sure what they’re for if anyone could enlighten me,






Otter feeding station




After standing around in the strong headwind and intermittent showers for ten minutes we turned around and headed back into the woods, we sought some shelter back at the Osprey bay and tried to get some better pictures.



I was messing about with my camera at one point and came across a button I hadn’t really used before, just as I zoomed into the nest tree one of the birds came back into shot, although not great hand held with 18x zoom I managed to grab this one


We continued back along the trail until we got back to the camp site, dodging more showers along the way.





Looking back down to camp


Sunday evening I took the 2.5Km walk back up to the beaver loch, I found out the day before that the beaver dam was the nearest place to camp where I could get any mobile signal. I checked in with Carol and caught up on the gossip from home, still not a sighting of the beavers, again.









Sunday evening was spent around the fire as usual, all of us pretty knackered so nobody made it past midnight before retiring.



During the night we had a lot of rain, it was still showery when I woke up on Monday morning. We tidied up camp, cleared away the fire remains, stacked up the left over fire wood and made our way back to the cars.

Tick Count = 2
 
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tartanferret

Full Member
Aug 25, 2011
1,865
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barnsley
Thanks for sharing your piccies Rich !

Re: the tree, we have one similar in a woods I go to but more chopped through than yours. In our case I'd always assumed the local cider monsters' attempt at tree-felling wore them out and they gave up / run out of white lightning ;)
 

Shewie

Mod
Mod
Dec 15, 2005
24,259
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45
Yorkshire
Looks good Rich.
One question. Where is Pete's pulk? I thought he was surgically attached t it

I think he had it stashed in his giant rucksack mate, it won't have been far away


Looks great shewie, loving the pic of the osprey you got. Nice one :)

Great report, reminds me that I need to go back to that area at some time. :)

Cracking write up Rich. Osprey pics are superb

Very nicely set out post. i love it up there. Cheers.

looks like a excellent trip thanks for sharing :)

Cheers lads


Thanks for sharing your piccies Rich !

Re: the tree, we have one similar in a woods I go to but more chopped through than yours. In our case I'd always assumed the local cider monsters' attempt at tree-felling wore them out and they gave up / run out of white lightning ;)

The cuts were strange, well to me anyway. We chatted about them at camp when I showed the other guys my photos on the camera, none of us were too sure really. We all pretty much agreed that they'd been killed off with some extreme ring barking method, but why not just take them down altogether if you've got the chainsaw handy.


Nice pics, thanks for sharing.

Nice trip, so the ticks are out there too.

Lots of nice Atlantic Oaks about ?

Lots of nice oaks about, as well as lichens, mosses and ferns starting to appear. Luckily the bracken wasn't up yet otherwise I think I would've ended up with a few more ticks than I did.


Great pic's and write up Rich stunning scenery, that Osprey landing is a cracker,, who was the poor tick magnet?

I picked up a couple, one tiny one under my watch strap which didn't really count. The juicy one buried in the back of my calf muscle was well dug in though.
 

Teepee

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jan 15, 2010
4,115
4
Northamptonshire
Great write up and pics as always :cool: The Osprey is a cracker.

I really enjoyed the trip. Very relaxing, great company and a lovely part of the world to craft some bush.



This was my best pic of the Osprey nest.


Thankfully. I got back tick free again. :)
 

Shewie

Mod
Mod
Dec 15, 2005
24,259
21
45
Yorkshire
Great write up and pics as always :cool: The Osprey is a cracker.

I really enjoyed the trip. Very relaxing, great company and a lovely part of the world to craft some bush.



This was my best pic of the Osprey nest.


Thankfully. I got back tick free again. :)

Nice shot of the nest, that's a belter of a zoom you've got on that new camera.

Good result on the ticks, I've been scratting at my leg all day at work :)


glad i took time to look at that,what a wonderful place.

Fantasic , thats the way to do it .
nice one

Twodogs

Nice one rich!!! Looks like a brilliant trip!!!

Cheers lads, it's a great part of the country
 
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