The Wester Ross Scribbles – Of Beaches and Fatdogs

21 Apr

It appeared a perfect Sunday morning.  On the Gairloch Beach families relaxed under a clear blue sky, kiddies burying their parents in the spotless golden sand before picking up their mobiles to claim on the insurance policies. The tide was well out and happy doggies paddled in the gently lapping waves.

But all was not as perfect as it first seemed.  In one deserted corner a tiny cloud of sand appeared and began to swirl and spin, growing bigger and bigger as it moved purposefully across the beach.  Stunned picnickers peered anxiously into the approaching sandstorm when, from somewhere deep in the spinning vortex, two black demonic shapes lunged straight towards them…

…The Fatdogs had arrived.

The Arrival of The Fatdogs

The Fatdogs thundered across the pristine sand and into the sea.  Murph is a far more adventurous animal and swims like a seal leaving Maisie, a far more refined and delicate creature, to paddle in the shallows.

Here are The Fatdogs in their element…scrounging!

On Gairloch Beach

A couple of days later we drove from Poolewe down to Redpoint, to visit another stunner of a beach, this one separated from the dead end single track road by giant sand dunes.  Again the sun shone on the righteous and we basked once more in blazing sunshine.  Maybe basking was a bit optimistic as the temperature had dropped a good few degrees since the weekend.  To the east the Torridons were a bit hazy.

Redpoint Beach

The beaches were the unmistakeable highlight of our first few days in the north-west when skies were blue and the temperatures reached past the minimum “sit outside” level.  Subsequent days were drier but cloudier and cooler but still able to produce enjoyable days out.

I’ll leave you with another photo from Gairloch Beach – it’s difficult not to sigh and imagine being back there.

Gairloch Beach


Posted by on April 21, 2010 in Wester Ross


11 responses to “The Wester Ross Scribbles – Of Beaches and Fatdogs

  1. Paul

    April 22, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    Hi Ken, looks like you caught all the summer weather before we returned to our current wintry conditions.
    I managed a trip to Torridon on the weekend of the 10th so wasn’t to far away.
    If only Enzo had known his cousins were nearby.

    BTW I’m still a couple of weeks behind with my write ups!
    Should finish Torridon trip tonight then it’s on to Glen Lyon from last weekend, doh!

    Cheers Paul

  2. Paul

    April 22, 2010 at 2:18 pm

    Hope the link works this time!



  3. Simon

    April 22, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    Hi Paul. Where abouts in Torridon? Could you post a link to your write up? Cheers

  4. fatdogwalks

    April 22, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    Hi Paul :D…I think everybody and his dug (quite literally)was in the Torridon area that weekend. Sadly I wasn’t on the hills (yet again 😦 )…but there’s always next time. Ain’t complaining about the weather though. Thanks for puting the link in for the photo. Enzo looks quite a character 😆 . Amazing how labs take to the hills even though they just ain’t designed for it.

    Looking forward to the write ups! Tried your site last night but was getting an error message…ok tonight though…no idea what the problem was…maybe it was just your server.

    Here’s a link to MrP’s wee adventure in Torridon on the same weekend. A great tail of human endeavour and tea stirring with a digital camera 😉 . Sorry Simon couldn’t resist… 😳

  5. annienz

    April 22, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    Look like a good time was had by all! The weather looks perfect.

    Amazing sand on your beaches – we just don’t do sand here. Every time we go over to our east coast PB is astonished by the stuff. We only have rocks & stones here on the west.

  6. fatdogwalks

    April 22, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    The west coast is mostly pretty rocky and stony Annie…but it does have small pocket sized beaches which are stunning. There are bigger beaches I believe on a number of the islands, but our longer beaches are on the east coast.

    I’ll dig out some photos from our travels to Tentsmuir Forest (Beach) in the Kingdom of Fife and post them up. There are a few here…

    but it doesn’t really show the scale.

  7. Paul

    April 23, 2010 at 8:38 am

    Ken, Enzo is some character, born in Scotland but only understands French on account that his owner Nathalie is well… French. He was brushing up on his scrambling skills on Beinn Alligin while in Torridon, did pretty good really, which is just as well as lifting him requires some effort!
    But in terms of “Dog-doability” Beinn Alligin requires a breed with bit more portability than a big black lab!
    Thanks for the link to MrP’s report, great stuff.
    Simon, really enjoyed your trip report. Brought back fond memories of recent trips to them there hills.
    Finished my write up, will post at the weekend.
    You will be able to find it here:

  8. fatdogwalks

    April 25, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    Which way did you take him up BA? Surely not over the “horns” 😯 Must read your report on this one 😆 I would have to carry The Fatdog over…and there’s no chance of that. Had enough of that sort of thing when we took her up the boulder field on the north side of Am Bodach – a never to be repeated experiment.

    Only understands French – hmm – might be useful to remember that when perched on a pointy ridge! You wouldn’t want to say the wrong thing then.

  9. Paul

    April 26, 2010 at 8:05 am

    Fortunately there is a path that by-passes the horns on the southside otherwise we would have had no chance of getting around.
    If I call his name he responds but after that he just looks bemused when I talk to him. A bit disconcerting when telling him to stop rolling around in the snow near the cliff edge!

  10. annienz

    April 28, 2010 at 4:03 am

    Thanks for the link to the beach/seals pics Ken. Interesting – our seals prefer the rocky beaches! And they are a uniform brown colour on the whole – not varied mottled patterns like your ones.
    I would stay well clear of them too!

  11. fatdogwalks

    April 29, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    Hi Annie – I had forgotten to post up some more pics…sorry. I’ve had a few computer problems this week and am only just able to sort them out – see new post.


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