|One advantage of autumn holidays in this part of Scotland is that like as not you can have places to yourself. I particularily appreciated it here. The farm track remains driveable since Broch's visit, with stone bases to the wheel ruts. Drive slowly, mindful of the ridge between, and you'll be fine. It was certainly worth it.. a glorious sunny day, empty car park, and Ardwell Bay is superb. You have two choices of route to the broch, the walk round the point from the bay, or taking the track that leads to the cottage a little bit beyond the car park, and then a path, vertiginous in places, leading from the cottage round the point, when the broch comes into view.. or you can treat the walk as a circular one, as I did., taking Broch's route. As you approach the broch, the path runs along a very narrow ridge with drops either side. This would have been the original path used during occupancy as there is no other feasiible approach, and it is worth looking at the block stonework underneath your feet, very probably original. The two entrances to the broch renained sufficiently intact to get the gist of the place, and somebody has tried to rebuild a little bit of the walls to create more substance, but weather should make short work of this. The rest of the site was substantially degraded, but nonetheless this remains a place well worth visiting and spending time. Next to Stairhaven it's the best preserved broch in these parts. I recommend climbing a way up the adjacent slope and looking down, seeing how it fits into the land and seascape and why the site was chosen. It is surrounded by drops to the sea on three sides, with one sheltered cleft with could have been used for boat haulage. A site high on ambiece. It was low tide, and I walked along Ardwell Bay's footprint free sand after completing my circular walk, munching on the edible seaweed, while a pair of divers and their young fished as they traversed the bay parallel to me, no more than a hundred feet away. If the weather's on your side a fine place to chill. For those visiting with family in tow this place is a must.
Posted by spencer
21st October 2015ce