Playing the tourist – Loch Ness #Scotland #Highlands

Haven’t done one of these for a while, but most of this year has been a blur of work with no time for sightseeing.

I managed to cram an entire day off into the schedule on the end of my last Highland trip and decided to play the tourist. We’ve actually owned a property nearby for nearly 20 years now, but I still never tire of the beautiful countryside around, or the mystery of that deep, deep loch.

Having decided to play tourist, I thought it would be a nice idea to take a boat trip out onto the loch, something I’ve not done since before we bought the house. Last time we went out from Fort Augustus, where this picture was taken, and has the most frequented trips.

 

Fort Augustus locks, Caledonian Canal

Seen across the canal, this is the old monastery at Fort Augustus. Sadly no longer home to monks (it was, when we visited 20 years ago), it has been converted into luxury appartments.

Perhaps better to steer clear of this one?

Back when we did it all those years ago, the boats were local fisherman making some spare cash, now they are full on tourist boats, with twin decks, toilets and a bar.

Tourist boat cruising the loch

Naturally, they were packed so I decided to try one of the boats out of Drumnadrochit, which lays half way up the loch, and features in my book, Desprite Measures.

The Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition at Drumnadrochit

We were collected by minibus from The Loch Ness Centre. Grand old building, isn’t it?

I failed to get a picture of our own boat, (though if you watch the BBC crime drama, ‘The Loch’, you’ll see it, as it was the one with the underwater camera that found the body!), but to give you an idea of size and type, this was its neighbour.

The ‘NESSIE HUNTER’

Off we went, and I was so glad, despite the T-shirt weather on land, that I’d brought a jacket – it gets COLD out there!

 

The ‘DEEPSCAN’ had been ploughing these waters a long time, involved in the Loch Ness Project for 40 years, and is a veteran of many scientific studies, films, TV series, and, of course, Nessie hunting.

Deepscan actually made the news a few years ago when its sonar found the monster! Much excitement ensued (as you may imagine!), until the beast was dragged to the surface and proved to be a long lost movie prop from a 1960s Sherlock Holmes movie.

The LADY BETH, aka DEEPSCAN

Lovely view from those houses

One of the attractions of taking a boat out from Drumnadrochit, is that you get unique views of the other iconic Loch Ness feature, Urquhart Castle.

And so we returned to our berth

…and set off home again, with the added bonus on the trip back up to Inverness or having a squirrel dart across the road in front of us (yes, it survived the experience).

Not unusual, you may think. But this was a red squirrel, these days a truly rare creature in the UK, though they are making a bit of a come back in Scotland, thanks to conservation work.

By Eichhörnchen_Düsseldorf_Hofgarten.jpg: Ray eyederivative work: Crisco 1492 (talk) – This file was derived from  Eichhörnchen Düsseldorf Hofgarten.jpg:, CC BY 2.0 de, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=18037749

Isn’t he cute?

Lovely way to finish a great day out.

 

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12 comments

  1. Looks good Deborah 😉

    1. It is truly awe inspiring. And writer inspiring too!

  2. What beautiful pictures. I can’t believe that clear and deep looking water. I would love to visit Scotland and hope to within the next two years.

    1. Scotland is breath taking, and the Highlands are the jewel of the country. If you plan a visit, do include some time up there.
      Loch Ness is monstrously deep – 235 metres (750 feet),, with steep sides and a wide, flat bottom. It’s not wide – 275m (900 feet) but is 22 miles long, so that’s a LOT of water.

  3. Great pics, Deb, thanks for sharing!
    You can tell by the choppiness of the surface that it must be incredibly deep. I bet you get a sensation of the depth, somehow, just by being in the boat.
    Sometimes we forget to enjoy the attractions of our own hometowns. Glad you found and enjoyed this one.
    Happy trails!
    ~Icky.

    1. That’s so true, it’s easy to ignore what is on our doorstep. Having said that, Loch Ness is hard to ignore! It’s so huge, and breathtakingly beautiful, and of course there is always the mystery. Is there anything down there or not?
      Glad you enjoyed the photos, always a pleasure to hear from you 😀
      Debby

  4. What a delightful trip. I notice no monster pictures. Sigh. Though that orange chipmunk is beyond darling.

    1. Sorry about the lack of monster pictures, I didn’t have the camera at the ready at the appropriate moment 🙂

  5. Deb, fabulous tour thank you! What a gift to be able to travel around so many beautiful places – the Highlands. I had to laugh at the boat – the Nessie Hunter, lol;. and I’ve never seen a red squirrel! 🙂

    1. That’s why I bought a house in the Highlands – so much beauty and still so unspoiled. I love your travel pics too – we should holiday in each other’s shoes sometime.

      1. Oh, that would be fab! When I do manage to get over to the UK, we are definitely hooking up girlfriend! 🙂

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