I’ve just returned form the beautiful bonnie land of Scotland – Aberdeen to be precise – where I bugged the missus to take me for a bit of an adventure!
…mainly in search of Lochs and Highlands cows to photograph but all the same I wanted to explore the lovely landscape that Scotland has to offer.
But as with most of our roadtrips things didnt quite go to plan!
I have a massively blind faith in technology, and I trust my iPhone alot as it’s got me out of some rather sticky situations (not always intoxicated may I add!) so lacking any kind of Tom Tom device the iPhone GPS was booted up and would be our guide for the day.
The destination was Loch Muich, somewhere West of Kez’s place and supposedly about an hour and a half to drive, nothing majorly complicated either, a couple of main roads and then winding through a few villages towards the end.
However things in my world are never as simple as they seem!
The drive itself was really pleasant – after loading up a pretty tasty looking picnic we meandered through the Scottish countryside, over cascading rivers and through places whose names I couldn’t pronounce properly in a millions years!
All was good until we entered the CairnGorm national park, and things got a little trickier. My 3G signal dropped out and my internet came to a grinding slow down – which meant zooming in on where we were took blooming ages to load!
So when we came across a sign directing us to a place pretty close to where we needed to be we ignored it in favour of the GPS…first mistake.
Then being caught up in banter about our next RTW trip (the ball is going to start rolling pretty soon…woop woop!) meant I wasn’t paying too much attention to either the time or the map.
Suddenly we found ourselves 30 minutes off track outside Balmoral Castle – home of the Queen and currently surrounded by heaps of cops! A quick U turn and we quickly tried to find out where we’d gone wrong and what turning needed to be taken, a new plan was formulated and all was good again – but once again this was merely in theory.
After finally locating what we thought was the turning we headed down a nice smooth tarmac road.
However this soon changed into a gravelly mess, yet our GPS said all was good so we trundled along at 20mph for the best part of 20mins.
In the midst of our increasingly dubious decision we stopped off at a pretty lush waterfall and even managed to eat our half melted ice creams by the river.
It was by this river that we noticed something rather odd – on the opposite bank was a road, a smooth road, a road leading in exactly the same direction as our gravel track!
Our suspicions where confirmed when we hit a dead end – well in actual fact a locked gate!
Que yet more backtracking and we finally located the correct route, which was ironically the signposted one we had ignored over an hour beforehand!
Worth The Wait
After a very smooth and rather speedy drive down the right road for a change we finally arrived at Loch Muich, well at the Spittle of Glenmuick carpark anyhow. The Loch itself was about a 10 minute walk through the valley surrounded by heaps of heather and some beautiful hills. The only downside was the fact the midges were out in full force and Kez got the crap bitten out of her! A small price to pay for finally arriving though!!
The Loch itself was straight out of a Scottish postcard – vast and nestled in some gorgeous scenery.
We unpacked the rug we bought in Morocco and had a well deserved rest and picnic on the waters edge…all romantical and what not! Full of hummous, cheese sandwhiches and other fattening treats we took the long trail back (in an attempt to be somewhat healthy!) cutting along the side of the valley and up towards the estate house.
To be honest the scenery was alot more lush than I expected and it’s reminded me how nice the UK can be to explore, I’m pretty keen to check out some more Highland treats on my next visit, I may even convince Kez to take me surfing in Thurso…although that’s a major pipe dream!
Bitten, slightly tired but overall very happy and smiley we headed back to the granite city via a latte in yet another place I can’t spell – and maybe a few more U turns and miscalculated directions…we’ll never learn!
But that’s the fun of roadtripping – 9 times of of 10 you always have the funniest and most unexpected mini adventures when things go wrong! Simply embrace the chaos!