In case you haven’t already realised, we’ve decided that rather than put ourselves and other road users at risk we should find off road/minor road routes even if it isn’t strictly on the NC500. As long as we walk 500 miles in the right general direction we think it counts and we hope you agree!
Whilst waiting for us to meet him, Phil spotted 4 Red Throated Divers on a nearby loch before he dropped us off at Rhifail Bridge, near Bettyhill. We walked the 8 or so miles along the river back to Bettyhill. Just after we started we met a lovely lady who asked where we were heading and told us we might make it to Bettyhill by about 6pm!
The track we were following was lovely to walk on, and the views across the river and hills were stunning. Thankfully the weather was much better than yesterday morning and we were really enjoying ourselves!
We passed a lovely loch with lots of lily pads in it and the track crossed several small burns, enjoying the sunshine as we went. There were also several deer fences with gates in however we came across one which we couldn’t open so had to climb it!
From here the track turned into a road and we wound our way slowly uphill, still admiring the views! We phoned Wendy again for a chat, which we think will become a daily occurrence!! As we rounded the corner by Lochan Duinte we were watching some geese fly by when a huge bird flew right over our heads. Showing photos to Phil later he identified it as some sort of eagle but our photos were too terrible to narrow it down any further!
Next we joined part of the Strathnaver Trail, including Achanlochy Clearance Village. We had a quick read of the information boards closest to the roads but unfortunately didn’t have time to explore further, although we’d love to go back one day. We did see the same lady again who was amazed we’d got to where we were so soon!
The stretch of main road up the hill into Bettyhill was quite difficult, especially as we were starting to get hungry! The views down to Torrisdale Bay were beautiful and it wasn’t too far before we saw Phil and the dogs!
We walked to The Store Cafe for a delicious lunch, which was just perfect and the dogs were given some water . A firefighter joined us whilst we ate lunch which was lovely and we had a good chat about the local area.
After lunch we filled up with fuel and made our way to Borgie where we parked in the woods. Taking the dogs with us we headed off, meeting a lovely lady near the Borgie Lodge Hotel who got the dogs a treat and chatted to us about what we were doing.
A little further along the road we met some more lovely people who had two beautiful flat coated retrievers (the same breed as Mollie). We spent a while chatting about our dogs and the similar traits they share, before Mollie and Jessie had yet another treat - it’s a good job they’re doing a lot of walking! Continuing on we had great views of the other side Torrisdale Bay.
We met Phil shortly after as the dogs were getting tired and were needing a drink and a rest in the car. Just the two of us again, we set off towards Skerray. The Croft community centre and post office we passed on the way was beautiful!
Eventually we reached the harbour which was just stunning but by this time it was around 6.15pm so we didn’t have long to stay and enjoy it!
Today has been a day filled with kindness and we so appreciate all the lovely people we have met through this challenge. It has been a lovely day both in terms of the walking and the conversations we’ve had.
In August 2019 we're walking 500 miles round the North Coast of Scotland in memory of Kevin Kerr, raising money for MND Scotland, Marie Curie & SITraN
Day by day