The Armin Grewe Homepage
Picture of three walkers over a bayAfter the grey and dull weather the previous day the weather was slightly better again. While it was still cloudy it was dry and we decided to proceed with the planned walk to Proaig and McArthur's Head. Together with Ken and Karen, two other regular visitors to Islay and in particular WalkIslay, we drove to Ardtalla from where we left for the walk.

The walk is a popular walk and featured in WalkIslay before. I had also walked to Proaig with my sister in Summer 2004 and continued to McArthur's Head on my own. This time we wanted to do some "reconnaissance" if the walk was suitable for WalkIslay 2006.

The ground was dry and the path in good condition so we made good progress and soon had a good view over the bay with Proaig and McArthur's Head at the end.

Visibility was reasonable, we could see Kintyre in the distance and a number of ships out on the water. A fishing boat was busy at work below us, circling around and performing other manoeuvres. Approaching Proaig we saw otters, unfortunately they were too far away to take any pictures. Approx 1.5 hours after leaving from Ardtalla we arrived at Proaig, where we had lunch at the shore.

Picture of a view over the sea with a fishing boat Picture of people sitting down for lunch on the shore
Picture of a view over a bay with a building on the shore Refreshed after the lunch and a bit of rest we continued towards McArthur's Head. Initially along the shore but after passing the old drystone wall we cut inland to follow the telegraph poles (well, what was left of them). This turned out not to be a good idea, the going was quite rough and we had to get through quite a lot of bracken. There wasn't much of a path either, so we had to find our own way.

It took us just over an hour to reach a point just above the lighthouse, from where we had a good view over the Sound of Islay and to the Isle of Jura. Looking at the pictures again now I had stood at almost exactly the same point during my visit in Summer 2004, although the weather had been better then. This time there was no sister waiting at Proaig and we had time to explore the McArthur's Head lighthouse.

Picture of a view over a sound between two islands
Picture of a lighthouse with a sound behind it When we arrived at the lighthouse it turned out that there was some refurbishment work under way, containers, boxes, planks and various materials filling up the walled area near the lighthouse. This made it quite difficult to take any decent pictures of the lighthouse.

The view into the Sound of Islay from the lighthouse is quite nice, although probably much more impressive on a clear day. From the lighthouse stairs lead down to the jetty, we didn't walk down all the way though. Partly due to midges, which for some reason seemed to thrive around the lighthouse. Having taken a few pictures and after a quick look around we soon left again to escape the midges...

Picture of a view down a sound Picture of a view down stairs on to a jetty
Picture of a panoramic view over a bay with a large hill in the background
Picture of walkers on a beach On the way back we didn't follow the telegraph poles and walked closer to the cliffs, which turned out to be a much easier and faster way. We had a great view over Proaig and Beinn Bheigier from just above Carraig an Ràtha. Along the beach and past Proaig we returned to Ardtalla.

Later in the evening I met with Ken and Karen in the pub of the Port Charlotte Hotel where we discussed the day's walk and future walks. As it was a mild night I walked down to the pier for nice night view of the Port Charlotte lighthouse.

A helpful map for this walk is Explorer Map 352: Islay South.

Picture of walkers looking over a bay Picture of a boat and a lighthouse in the dark

Kilchoman Distillery <- Scotland Summer 2005 -> A rainy rest day