Cycling the Hebrides: Day 6 Harris

Yesterday’s commotion on the boat led to us eating a rather sedate breakfast though enough to fuel the 30 odd Kms we needed to do to catch the ferry to Skye. My planning, not being the best, was in for a change, we found that there was only one ferry to Skye from Tarbet on a Thursday so we’d need to get the Kms done before 11 to catch said ferry. Another early start and you’d think we’d not been on holiday! The breeze was still in our favour and thank god as the relative flat of the previous rides had gone and this was to be hillier. A nice long drag out of Leverburgh took us over into Scarista Bay. The road dipping down touching the white sands and then rising again. This would be the order all along Harris’s west coast. We stopped to take photographs but didn’t hang about as the clock was ticking. Even though early we had a notorious hill to climb to take us into Tarbet from Luskentyre so we daren’t stay for long in case that climb breaks one of us into a push. Luskentyre beach looks out over to Taransay, an island that was famed for the series Castaway 2000. It’s a picturesque scene as the huge beach reaches out into the Sound of Taransay with the island in the distance and before that Harris’s hills stop abruptly.

Climbing the hill out of Luskentyre the landscape of Harris changed into barren peat and rocky hills with little lochs dotting the scene. We kept climbing on good road. Until the top was reached via a few false summits. The old road still visible in parts with Tarmac snaked the hillside slowly being taken over by nature. I fancied cycling on it if only for a while tho with the hill and panniers I thought again. There are many places where a new road has been built next to where the old road was, and white lines can be seen in between heather, grass and peat, which slowly are reclaiming it to nature. The new roads taking an easier route but also not following the natural contours so closely, thankfully.

We enjoyed the view at the top and free wheeled down into Tarbet. That was Harris. The ferry to Skye was on the MV Hebrides, a large ferry which was welcome as i did not fancy the sea sickness again. Arriving into Uig bay we headed for our B&B which helpfully was 2 mins away and 1 min from the pub!

It was merely mid afternoon when we walked to the otherside of the bay hoping to go to the Ferry Inn but it turned out to be closed. Instead we pushed on up the hill to have a pint in the Uig Hotel. Some Skye Brewery Red was the drink of choice, sipping it overlooking the bay on an outside bench. Life is good!


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