|Tour:||Fort William, Glenfinnan, Glenfinnan Viaduct, Mallaig, ferry, Armadale, Broadford, Torrin, Skye Bridge, Kyle of Lochalsh, Eilean Donan Castle, Five Sisters of Kintail, Spean Bridge Commando Memorial, Fort Willam|
|Start Point:||Ballachulish||Grid Reference:||NN 082 583|
|Distance:||185 mile drive, 2.5 mile walk||Ascent:||340 feet|
|Time:||10 hour drive and sightseeing with 1.75 hours for the walk|
|Weather:||Overcast with mist on the hilltops|
|Comments:||An easy track took us from the visitor centre to the viaduct where there a large number of people sitting on the hillside at the viewpoint because The Jacobite was due half an hour later. After taking a few photos we decided it was to long to wait and continued on to the station where we didn't have long to wait for the Jacobite to arrive - and a perfect photo opportunity. A quick detour to th memorial before returning to the car. Arrived in Mallaig in good time to catch the ferry to Armadale. Drive then detour to experience small roads but no views of Cuillins. Across Skye Bridge and stop to take photos. Route took us alongside Five Sisters of Kintail which were spectacular even with a light mist on the tops. Continued on to Memorial at Spean Bridge before returning to the cottage.|
An easy tack took us from the visitor centre . . .
to the viaduct . . .
where a large number of people were sitting at and around the lookout point
Evidently the 'Hogwarts Express' was due . . .
in 30 minutes
Loch Sheil comes into view . . .
with the memorial at its head
Arriving at Glenfinnan railway station . . .
we spot the 'Hogwarts' luggage . . .
as we wait for the train
Puffing its way . . .
into the station . . .
the 'Hogwarts Express', otherwise known as the Jacobite, is a spectacular sight
Marie . . .
and I take advantage of its stop here
Even the controls look shiny . . .
and the driver goes about his duties . . .
before getting up steam . . .
to move the train forwards . . .
so that the passengers can get off . . .
and giving me time to get on board
The Glenfinnan Monument . . .
a tribute to those who died fighting the Jacobite cause . . .
with a lone highlander at the top . . .
looking down the loch
A little more information
Taking the ferry . . .
we leave Mallaig behind . . .
and see another ferry . . .
on our way to Armadale , , ,
with a look back to the mainland
Returning over the Skye Bridge . . .
we continue on to Eilean Donan Castle . . .
built in the mid 13th century
Even a robin comes to take in the view
Partially destroyed in the Jacobite uprising in 1719 the castle was restored and re-opened in 1932
The Memorial at Spean Bridge is dedicated to the men of the original British Commado Forces raised during World War II
It overlooks the training areas of the Commando Training Depot
A Garden of Remembrance was added to the site and is used by many surviving World War II Commandos as the designated final resting place for their ashes
It has also been used as a place where many families have scattered ashes and erected tributes to loved ones . . .
who belonged to contemporary Commando units and who have died in more recent conflicts such as the Falklands War or in Afghanistan and Iraq.