Isle of Jura - May 2012

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Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby andy mc » 02 Feb 2013, 02:47

Jura and Islay - May 2012

Hi,
I've been planning to post these pictures since last June, but life got in the way.

I bought our Westy Joker in October 2010, and spent the first 18 months happily pottering around the Dales and Lakes, whilst secretly hankering to go on a 'bigger' trip.

I spent a few holidays as a kid in Aviemore, Ullapool, etc. and had been back to the west coast as an adult on a few occasions.

Last May I secured a 'pass out' for a week on Jura and Islay, for a week of running,walking,biking and whisky tasting.

So here are the results of a fantastic week spent mainly on Jura, with a couple of days on Islay, with stop-overs at Loch Lomond and Dumfries on the way there and back.

Set off from West Yorkshire on a warm, sunny early summers Wednesday at the end of May, heading for Glasgow, via Kirkby Lonsdale, and then onto a campsite on the east side of the Loch.
Beautiful weather on arrival, memories of drinking beer and watching water ski-ing on the Loch until darkness fell at 11pm.
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The next morning it was an early-ish start for the drive up to Kennacraig, taking in the magnificent Arrochar Alps, via Loch Fyne to the ferry port.
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Once we docked at Kennacraig, it was a quick transfer onto the Feolin ferry for the short hop across the Sound of Islay on to Jura. The Paps of Jura looming ever closer on the short trip across.
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Once on Jura we wild camped in the main town, Craighouse, mainly due to the proximity of the Jura Hotel bar and distillery right behind the hotel.
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The last Saturday in May saw the annual Jura Fell race where the 200 Diurach inhabitants were joined by 250 fell runners and associated family/friends/hangers on.
The race made for a great buzz on the island, and all us invaders were made more than welcome by the Diurachs.
I spent Friday climbing Beinn Shiantaidh, one of the awe-inspiring Paps of Jura, with very steep ascents and huge boulder strewn sides.
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On the cycle back to the van, I came across Corran Sands, a fantastic crescent shaped beach with white sand and beautiful clear water to bathe in. I even spotted a T25 Komet, with arguably the best camping spot on the island.
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The last day on Jura was spent walking over to Loch Tarbert on the west coast, to Glenabatrick bay, where Glenabatrick house sits right on the beach. The house is /was owned by Lord and Lady Astor and is reputedly where Christine Keeler was whisked to when the Profumo scandal broke, to keep her away from Fleet St hacks eager for salacious headlines!
Not a bad place to be holed up for a fortnight !
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After a few days enjoying Jura (the weather was fantastic with clear blue skies and 25 degree daytime temperatures) it was back on the ferry for the short hop onto Islay.
Islay had even better beaches, and is where the majority of the distilleries are based.
The distilleries are well worth visiting, with huge storage casks of malt whisky 'maturing' and a steady stream of German/Japanese/Americans all punishing their credit cards for the sake of the local economy.
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The return journey started with a very early ferry from Port Askaig back to Kennacraig and then an overnight stop at Dumfries.
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Overall a memorable trip.
'Helga' performed in true reliable fashion for the whole 1,500 miles, coping with all that was placed in front of her.

This year we are going camping in Holland and Belgium, but I'm hoping to 'sneak' away for a few days up on the west coast again if I can manage it.
Thanks for looking, Andy
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby jason k » 02 Feb 2013, 07:25

Fantastic pictures chap, sweet lookin westy too!
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby LittleMissSunshine » 02 Feb 2013, 09:34

Wow! Thanks or sharing, wish that Komet had been me! Definately on the list, it looks wonderful. Nothing like those deserted beaches to make you love life.

Nice van too :ok

I really hope we get good weather this summer :D
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby LittleMissSunshine » 02 Feb 2013, 09:34

Wow! Thanks or sharing, wish that Komet had been me! Definately on the list, it looks wonderful. Nothing like those deserted beaches to make you love life.

Nice van too :ok

I really hope we get good weather this summer :D
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby meggles » 02 Feb 2013, 10:46

Nice pics and write up. Would love to get back to Scotland again this year but in the van instead of stopping in cottages. I like picture No 9. I'd offer to buy a copy but I reckon it's probably too deer :lol:
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby jamesandtheopenroad » 02 Feb 2013, 11:35

Lovely. Just lovely.

May have to rethink my ten days in Cornwall plan for July...
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby Sleedale » 02 Feb 2013, 14:55

Fabulous pictures. dare not show them to. OH ,he will want to go - NOW :idea
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby H Julia » 03 Feb 2013, 19:57

Enjoyed your photos - glad you posted them :D . I plan to go to Islay and Jura this year and your pictures have encouraged me to get on with planning ! Julia
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby evilnoodle » 03 Feb 2013, 20:22

Fantastic....I am getting so itchy for some time away in the van now. I do hope we get some good weather this year!!!
Jane :-)

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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby fairwynds » 06 Feb 2013, 11:45

So VERY on my list of places to visit! Thanks for the inspiration :)
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Re: Isle of Jura - May 2012

Postby sfjbrad » 06 Feb 2013, 15:55

Looks amazing - making me reconsider our 10 days in Cornwall over Easter!
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