Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Wednesday 13 August

Very nice day, up to a point, which I spent in Harris. Took the 10 am bus down to Luskentyre; when you get off the bus, you're only at the road-end. To reach the beach, there is a 3 mile walk ahead of you.

Luskentyre is a small village, some 10 miles southwest of Harris's main town, Tarbert. The hamlet is strung out along a river estuary, which merges into an area of stunning sands. When I turned up, it was 11.30 am and sunny. I made my way down the road and had lunch in the dunes. Then it was a hop down the beach, which overlooks the island of Taransay (infamous for the Castaway 2000 project) and the west coast of South Harris.

My primary objective was to photograph more wargraves in the local cemetery, but it had eluded my attention (and memory) that Luskentyre has two graveyards. The second cemetery had 4 wargraves in it; the first one, nearest the beach, was too recent.
I had wanted to sit by the beach, but the midges were ferocious at times of no wind.
Also, it started to rain, and I got pretty wet on my way to the bus shelter. Bus stops do not exist here, you just flag down the bus. Service W10 was 15 minutes late, as the driver had to do the tourist thing, stopping at all the beaches and letting people off to take pictures. Some intrepid souls are reported to have taken a bath in the sea at such points. If I say that water temperatures at this latitude are 12C / 54F, would you be tempted?

As I kicked my heels at the Luskentyre road-end, a woman came jogging out of the village and headed up the main road towards Tarbert. She was chaperoned by two dogs. An hour later, as I left Tarbert for Stornoway, the same lady appeared in the village main street - she had covered the 8 miles in an hour on foot. The A859 road is pretty busy (by Hebridean standards), and whenever a vehicle appeared, she had to get self and dogs off the road.

I returned to Stornoway at 5.15. The driver had to stop to answer a mobile phone call, and also to drop off people at various points along the way - in other words, he was 10 minutes late.


  1. No I wouldn't want to swim in 54*.  I imagine the Pacific Ocean here on the coast of Washington is about the same.  As is Puget Sound that wanders down my way from the Straits of Juan de Fuca.  Linda in WA  

  2. Sounds like a good day!  Migosh, 54 degrees.  NO WAY!!  That's just too cold.  Gosh, that lady with the dogs must be in great shape.  She's doing what I need to do!  Linda

  3. I would have been tired by the time I walked the 3 miles to the beach. lol I need to walk more. Pretty cool water! Lady jogs pretty fast! lol Have a great week. Janie

  4. I just love the island way of life...bus late...why worry he's just using his phone !! I can just imagin eif that happened down here there would be a riot !!  Love  Sybil xx

  5. Awwwwwwww apart from the spell of rain Guido sounds like my type of heaven.
    Living in London the coast is a dream away for me.
    I love the idea of the bus just stopping when you need to hop on and off...... not sure about the people taking a dip in the sea in your time though, think that would frustrate me, saying that obviously its a totally different lifestyle there......... much more relaxed.

    We had a terrible day of winds in London yesterday...... very chilly too........ ho hum what ever happened to Summer ??
    Just heard on the news that three people were injured when a tree blew onto their vehicle in Clapham Common, South London, unfortunately one of them died....... another tragedy cause my natural phenomenoms.

  6. dear Guido
    Interesting work!:)
    thanks a ton! natalie