After the high winds of the day before, waking up in such a peaceful anchorage was delightful. Mirror images in every direction. I rowed to the shore and climbed to the castle wall to sit there for half an hour absorbing the beauty of the scene before me. Rowing back to Milo there were two herons on the shore of Riska Island (on the right of the photo below).
After both having dips from the back of the boat, we left for Eigg distinguished by its harpoon shape with the peaks of Rhum giving it a mountainous background and making it look bigger than it really is.
Approach Eigg with Rhum in the background
The scenery of the Inner Hebrides is dominated by four ancient volcanoes on the SW corner of Mull, the headland of Ardnamurchan, the Isle of Rhum and the SW of the Isle of Skye, shown in orange on the map below. The areas in grey are the fields of lava which flowed from these volcanoes. The Isles of Eigg and Muck have been formed from these lava flows.
On arrival at Eigg we anchored south of the harbour and took the tender with the outboard to the pier. There’s no town on Eigg – just a landing stage and a café, craft shop and general store rolled into one. There are clearly many lovely walks on the island – we did part of the shorebased one called Kildonan which gave beautiful views of the drying out harbour and the Oystercatchers taking advantage of it and a Puffer being restored. Even the sheep were sunbathing on the beach!
Anchored south of Eigg harbour
Sheep sunbathing on the beach
A Puffer being restored in the harbour.
As we left Eigg for Arisaig, we could see the impending weather change behind us. The entrance to Arisaig through Loch nan Ceall is described in the Pilots’ guide as one of the most hazardous in Scotland, yet we found the entrance quite clearly marked by poles although at high tide it was quite difficult to spot them – having a good chart plotter really helped.
Leaving Eigg with Muck in the background and the sky signalling the impending change of weather
We picked up a mooring at Arisaig. But the scant resources there and the casualness of the staff convinced us that we should move on to Mallaig as the prospect of two days bad weather floating on a mooring with nowhere to go was not good. One highlight the next morning was bumping into John Howard from Tobermory (who replaced our autopilot), who was working on his boat Waver Raider.
John Howard’s boat, Wave Raider, 2 years being renovated ready to go in the water the next day