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Picture of Imke at the gate to the entrance of Ardtalla Picture of Imke walking into the hills past Ardtalla
Picture of the bay with Proaig in the distance Our first full day on Islay, time for some hillwalking. I decided to take my sister on a walk we had completed during the Islay Walking Week in April 2004 and extend the walk for myself.

We parked the car near where Claggain River flows into Claggain Bay and set off towards Ardtalla. Ardtalla was reached soon and then we were off into the hills. First it was through the hills, up and down, crossing various burns until we caught first glimpses of Proaig, the Sound of Islay and the Isle of Jura in the background. We were lucky with the weather as well, the sun breaking through more and more.

Below a panorama of the view we had on our way to Proaig. This view is also available as QuickTime VR panorama of Proaig, McArthur's Head and the Isle of Jura (1.5MB download, fast connection or enough time recommended).

Picture of a panoramic view over the bay with Proaig
Picture of Imke having lunch at Proaig After about 1.5 hours of walking we arrived at the bothy in Proaig. By now it was lunchtime, so we sat down in the sun to enjoy our lunch. After lunch we split up:

While my sister stayed at Proaig to rest and lie in the sun I walked on north. Along the shore I walked to Carraig an Ràtha where I started to walk up the lower slopes of Beinn na Caillich. I then followed a path (or what I thought was a path) to McArthur's Head with its lighthouse.

From McArthur's Head the views into the Sound of Islay and over to the Isle of Jura are quite impressive. The view below is also available as QuickTime VR panorama of the Sound of Islay, McArthur's Head and the Isle of Jura (1MB download). With my sister waiting in Proaig I unfortunately didn't have much time and had to turn back all too soon.

Picture of the bothy at Proaig, Beinn Bheigier in the background Picture of the lighthouse at McArthur's Head with Jura in the background
Picture of the Sound of Islay from McArthur's Head
Picture of Armin walkingPicture of Imke crossing a burnMid afternoon I arrived back in Proaig where my sister was waiting for me, ready to walk back to Claggain Bay.

We followed more or less the same way we came, again crossing various burns and walking through the hills below Beinn Bheigier to Ardtalla. Late in the afternoon we arrived back at my car. On the way back to Port Charlotte we stopped at Kildalton and Laphroaig. Back at the hotel we had a very nice dinner before going to the pub for some drinks and live music. A very nice evening after a great day out.

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