It rained through the night and cleared up by the morning to bring us the most marvellous sunny day! Drove up the East side of Loch Ness and stopped at Urquhart Castle to check it out and make some breakfast. Nae bother to go in, just had a good look from the outside, such a beautiful castle right on the Loch Ness edge. It’s one of the places where sightings of Nessie have been reported and was one of Scotlands largest castles.
Drove on West to visit an old friend of Liam’s who owns an estate nestled right amongst the mountains with a beautiful lake right in the middle of it all. They have a lovely cottage for accommodation and 2 eco pods. Sheep, lambs and chickens and the odd wild deer pops his head in to say hello. Apparently there is an abundance of badgers in the area and unfortunately they come out and take the chickens! The lambs were so cute, some being born just the night before and we got to have a cuddle.
We continued on to the end of the road which was a dead end to check out the stunning mountainous scenery (standard). Snow still capped the mountains all around and we came to a dam at the end with beautiful view. A very VERY windy afternoon!
Driving up North now we stopped in Inverness to get food and fuel. This was our biggest shop at £51. Stocked up right well haha! Drove up through Golspie where we stopped at a lovely beach along the way. Swung by Dunrobin Castle to take a photo. It looked like a very high class castle with a beautiful sea view.
As we head up the North East coast the weather turned and started to get rainy, however beautiful yellow gauze bushes lined the edge of the roads as we drove up the coast. When we got to Helmsdale it was still pouring with rain. We headed about a 5 minute drive North of here and pulled up at a site “Helmsdale River Board” which was possibly where Mum and Dad stayed in 1978. Still raining, Liam holds an umbrella over me outside whilst I wash all the dishes! The things we must do living a van lifestyle, always adds to the beauty of living in the moment and accepting situations for what they are whilst enjoying every moment! We managed to get the van sorted by moving everything over the seats from the back and set up for cooking some dinner. Portabello Mushroom Burgers and ‘Perfect Storm’ Ale. Not long after, it stopped raining and cleared up, time being about 9-10pm. Still light and very beautiful colours of the yellow gauze, blue/grey skies, river and green hills surrounding 360. Epic bright moon shone down to complete the day.
by Julie Faulkner