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Mountain summits, coastal walks and sea kayak tours

Looking out over Edrachilles Bay from high on Quinag's summit ridge

Adult walking and sea kayaking holiday

Mountain summits, coastal walks and sea kayak tours

Tuesday June 28th 2011

A quieter pace is set for the adult walking and sea kayaking holiday this week, far removed from the fast paced school adventure courses of the last month.

There is a strong international feel this week with Sweden, Germany, the United States and Britain all represented around the dining table! With a low-level and mountain option each day the course can pick and choose depending on how they feel.

On Sunday everyone climbed Ben Stack from Achfary and returned via Strath Stack, a good introduction to the area and the terrain. Despite some early rain the summit was clear of cloud with good visibility out to Ardmore and the Atlantic beyond.

On Monday the team split, with a low-level contingent walking the coastline from Keoldale on the Kyle of Durness, around to the long white sands of Balnakeil and on to Farhaid Head. The high-level contingent climbed Cranstackie and Ben Spionnaidh from the shepherd’s house at Rhigolter. With beautiful weather the mountain team had far reaching views to Ben Hope and Ben Loyal beyond, along the north coast to Loch Eriboll, the Kyle of Tongue, and Orkney on the horizon.

Today, with another near perfect forecast half of group set off with Chris on a sea kayak journey around the sheltered waters of Loch A Chadh-Fi and out around Paddies Isle. On its western side the island rises under high cliffs of Lewsian Gneiss with marbled swirls of vivid red and black rock. On a calm day it is possible to paddle right under the cliffs that tower above.

A small team travelled south to Quinag, a quartzite and sandstone massif with a number of summits and views south across the Assynt landscape. The clouds looked heavy and forbidding for much of the day but it remained dry and the spells of sunshine that came through turned the sea in Edrachilles Bay bright blue.

Handa Island is tomorrow’s destination to see the nesting colonies of puffins, razorbills and guillemots.