[All plans are subject to change depending on weather etc].
After much discussion, accompanied by a that fine mind lubricant that The Gurnard always carries for boating emergencies we have developed a bit of a plan! It is intended to provided maximum flexibility to adapt to the weather on the day, and not leave us too much in the middle of nowhere if the forecast is wrong etc.
There is a small abandoned island not far from Easdale that in our discussions became described as "a SIBable St Kilda". That is our target destination for the Saturday evening if the weather plays ball. We'll be starting off at Ganavan Sands Car Park / Slipway - which the nice people at Argyll & Bute Council have confirmed we can use for both days for the trivial pay and display cost. There are various ways to get to Belnahua from there and you might choose to hug the shore, pass under the "Bridge Over the Atlantic
" and all the way round Luing, or head North first and see Castle Stalker
and the ruined castles on Lismore, or take in a lap of Kerrera the Island directly opposite Oban and stop for your first cup of tea at the Tea Garden
, before grabbing Lunch at the Oyster Bar on Seil!
If the history on Belnahua and neighbouring Fladda with its classic Stevenson lighthouse is too recent for you then perhaps you'll want to take in the Monastic Beehives at the Garvellachs
. And of course whatever you don't fit in on the way there becomes an option for the return journey after a night under canvas on Belnahua.
For those coming from far afield you may want to stay before or after and Oban has a wide range of accommodation for all tastes and budgets including the Oban Caravan and Camping Park
which is likely to be the default choice for RIBnetters ariving on the Friday.
If camping is not your thing then there is plenty of accommodation in Oban, and the B&Bs of Easdale, Seil and Luing which serve our "big boat friends" so well in May shouldn't be so far away that you feel too isolated from those left high and dry on Belnahua!
Of course if the weather is really foul the Firth of Lorne is no place for a SIB and we may revert to plan B in the more sheltered Loch Etive, or hide from the weather in some suitable hostelry with salty tales of what might have been!
More details attached.
So far we have: