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Old 20 March 2012, 15:01   #11
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hi all and thanks for your speedy responses,

your right polwart, I do need to narrow down my options a wee bit, would prefer campsite with shower block at least, otherwise SWMBO would not go, and for my first trip to the bonnie land would prefer 3-4 hrs max from manchester. not bothered whether fresh or salt water expedition, just need easy access to the water.

does anybody know of any sites in the dumfries and galloway area on the beach or near a slipway. thanks again
Those sound like sensible specifications. Unfortunately it probably moves you out of my area of knowledge. There is some lovely coastline around d&g but I've never taken the boat. I also don't have any campsite experience in that part of the world as generally I like a bed and a proper roof, I can be convinced to camp but only when far away from other people! If 4 hours can get you to around largs then the clyde has much potential for boating, camping and keeping wives happy with things to see and do in bad weather. Not sure if 4 hrs is possible though? It probably rules out most inland water except maybe loch ken (very small) and loch lomond with some spirited driving.
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Old 20 March 2012, 15:41   #12
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Numerous places around West of Dumfries and Galloway.
Luce Bay.
Port William has village campsite and slipway in harbour (3 hours either side high tide)
Other slipway across beach a bit rocky.
Auchenmalg has camping above beach and slip if required next to pub.
Sandhead has camping and caravan site and easy launch from beach. Can be long walk at low tide.
Ardwell has camping and caravan site and slip onto sandy beach.
New England Bay has camping and excellent caravan site with safe and sheltered beach launch.
Loch Ryan
Innermessan has camping above beach (with toilet) and easy beach launch.
Wig Bay has best slip in Scotland although a few holes now. Built for flying boats in 1940. Long enough at any tide. Caravan site nearby. Not sure about camping. Sailing club on slip has toilet showers etc by arrangement.
West Coast.
Port Logan has easy beach launch and campsite adjacent. very popular with fisherman. Only 15 miles to Ireland
Plenty of B&B's, hotels caravan sites campsites etc and lots of other possible launch sites across beaches although some can be very rocky.
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Old 20 March 2012, 17:44   #13
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sibbing in scotland

thanks everyone, plenty of food for thought there. 1 more query......the midges, anybody been bothered by them in early april?
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Old 20 March 2012, 17:52   #14
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thanks everyone, plenty of food for thought there. 1 more query......the midges, anybody been bothered by them in early april?
For God's sake why is everybody south of the border bothered about Midges!! In April in D&G no problem!!
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Old 20 March 2012, 18:11   #15
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For God's sake why is everybody south of the border bothered about Midges!! In April in D&G no problem!!
I propagate the myth so we get Scotland to ourselves. So the official answer is they'll be terrible - stick to the solent!

However more seriously, midges generally get worse the further north and west you go. Even then they are only usually troublesome from June to August. Even then you will not be bothered by them whilst actively ribbing, only if you happen to be still or moving slowly (and probably not offshore) if there is little wind, and its not raining. So d&g in April should be fine. In fact even in typically bad areas the last few years have been very 'mild' for midges even in peak season. Anyone not coming cos of the midges is really missing out over nothing.
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Old 20 March 2012, 19:15   #16
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I stay at the campsite at Glen Brittle on Skye every year. The midges can be a problem in the morning and early evening forcing us onto the beach (where there are none) to cook breakfast or dinner in the shadow of the black Cuillins. Sometimes life can be hell .

Glenbrittle Campsite , Carbost Campsites, Isle Of Skye
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Old 21 March 2012, 05:43   #17
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prefer 3-4 hrs max from manchester.

<snip>

dumfries and galloway area
Never undersetimate how slow the jouney to the left of the M74 can be, especially if you are towing a caravan! Having said that, I'll second all the stuff above.

Other thing to remember about D&G area is there are lots of flat sandy beaches, which are great for sibs, but your short carry to the water's edge at high tide may become a half mile walk 3 hrs later. Sandhead being a prime example...
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Old 21 March 2012, 08:06   #18
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[QUOTE=spartacus;451540]Check out Ullapool in the NW of Scotland.....QUOTE]

I agree with Spartacus that Ullapool has everything you need for a right good sib up. Bit of a trek from down south though. If the weather's not good you can hang about in the Loch Brooms.

Heading north from Ullapool is Ardmair, caravan/camp site and good for launching boats. Sets you up for the Summer Isles which are beautiful and full of seals and all that.
Ullapool - Ardmair Point Holiday Centre - Luxury Self Catering holiday accommodation and holiday park

You can also camp on the grassy front at Achiltibuie for free, launch from the beach. Could be busy on the wrong weekend and you could be worried by drunken minks who leave their empty beer bottles and rubbish behind like the stinking dogs that they are.

There is a campsite further round the road at Fuaran, Altandhu RIGHT OPPOSITE the summer isles, i have seen folk setting off from there in kayaks. Port A Bhaigh Campsite, Altandhu, Achiltibuie . Right opposite (2mins by sib) this campsite is the Isle Ristol, one of the summer isles. I have a photo of this beach here: West coasting in a dry boat.

Dont have to worry about Midge Ure until June.
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Old 21 March 2012, 08:51   #19
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>>your short carry to the water's edge at high tide may become a half mile walk 3 hrs later. Sandhead being a prime example...

I'd second this. Had many great holidays in the D & G area but have a good look at a chart noting low tide contours before you book somewhere. It can come as a nasty shock just how far away across sandy mud from a high tide launch you will end up at low tide.

We now tend to go a bit further northwest where most of the lochs are steep sided rock with occasional bays so there's often just a few yards from the high-low tide position.

If you don't want to go too far north and would consider a cottage Ellary Estate is small boat heaven. Choice of fair priced cottages set (mostly) around a small sheltered bay in Loch Caolisport. Estate owner keen on boating visitors and will beach launch/recover (FOC) your boat (if on a trailer) at each end of your stay.

Holiday Cottages

It's a very private situation with no access from the normal public so boat security is good. You can haul a SIB just above the high water mark or with transom wheels pull it up into the garden of your cottage. There is also a small private harbour where you can keep the boat so it's ready to to go at all states of the tide.

Four of the cottages are around the grass at the top of this small sheltered bay seen in the streetview link...

http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?q=ella...15000&t=h&z=18

Boating can be done with good safety around the head end of the loch, it feels larger scale as it broadens to the mouth and then out into The Sound of Jura for a much bigger experience.

Video of our 13ft GRP boat heading out from our last holidaycottage there...



Image of our old Zodiac in front of the cottage.

Zodiac in front of Kennels Cottage:: OS grid NR7476 :: Geograph Britain and Ireland - photograph every grid square!

Round in the next loch, Loch Sween, the same estate has caravans to let with even more boating options.

Caravan Rental
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Old 21 March 2012, 09:41   #20
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Stayed at the Sween caravans before -it would be perfect for a SIB. Caravans in pretty good nick too for hire vans.


Jumping back to the travel, realistically you are taking 3.5 - 4 hrs to Glasgow. Anywhere down the Eastern Clyde coast as far as Ayr ditto. (either go direct on winding slow roads or double back down the M77 quickly - it's the same travel time)

Makes me think that for an extra half hour you could be around Loch lomond, but with a nice portable SIB you then also have Lochs Long, Goil, Fyne & the Gareloch at your fingertips for the Clyde, or if you wanted a wee "city break" throw it in at Helensburgh & turn left! If you are staying for a week another 45 mins / 1 hr north (depending where you are) and you are in Oban, or Taynuilt for a day trip on Loch Etive & the Falls of Lora. Plenty of previous posts on that area.


Alternatively that extra half hour beyond Glasgow could take you up the M73 and along the M8 or M80 to the Forth, but I'll leave the locals like SPR et al to big it up & recommend places to stay.
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