Thanks for calling in guys. Im afraid Im no Hamish MacInnes although I did run around the hills with his cousin in my younger days... so we have met. Im just an old man and the sea..trying my best to land a fish before I die .....
Eilean Dubh Mor looked very suitable for a wild camp. There is a large grassy area above the smooth stoned sheltered beach.
On the other side of the grass area in another stone beach pointing in the opposite direction from the one I landed on..so has multiple possibilities ..depending on the direction of the wind. If the south shore of Belnahua proves a bit tricky to leave boats overnight..this is an alternative spot
Some research has found that the outward bound centre on Lunga sometimes drops kids off on this island to rough it and fend for themselves for a few days. They normally go to the caves and we probably would not see them. They build a flag pole and fly a flag if they are on the island..so we would know they were there.
Relaxed after lunch and warmed in the sun..we got back on the boat and started heading north leaving Lunga and Eilean Dubh Mor behind in our wake.
The weather gods were kind to us.. the wind dropped to nothing..and the sea turned to a mill pond. Far in front we could see the lighthouse of Fladda.
We could also see the dark streak of the tide race running across our path once again.
This time there was not any dancing waves.. just a silent swirl .. the SIB felt nothing as we slide easily across. Belnahua and the distant island of Mull looked very inviting from this angle.
Soon we were passing Fladda and its lighthouse. I knew we were now in far kinder waters. We had just touched on a few of the most treacherous channels and tidal flows in the UK.. but pick the day and watch the weather..and you are rewarded with views of truelly stunning seascapes and scenery.
A passing note for other small SIBbers if you venture here on your own. On our journey never saw another boat since Easdale. The handheld VHF didn’t pick up many comforting messages from coast guard or other boats. Range I suspect is often too short among the rocky islands but I didn’t try transmissions. Water depth is 100ft or so but an anchor in a tide race is as much use or as dangerous on a small SIB as rubber oars.
My most valuable safety item is the Auxiliary engine.. don’t go on your own..without one. Granted.. it wont get back to Ganavan or fight the strong tides..but I know it will ferry glide the SIB across the currents and get to the nearest landing spot..where I wont drown..and hopefully be rescued before I starve to death.
It is worth practising using the Aux engine too..Kayakers practice self rescue.. mountaineers practise self rescue.. small boats should do it too.. but how many actually do ? My opinion only of course.. others can disagree if they wish
On the Scottish SIB outing..there will be other boats to assist if problems occur ..so an Aux is not a necessity them
I will continue the journey back to Ganavan..with some more sight seeing photos.. shorty.