40 miles

At last we woke to no rain! As we ate breakfast at the Western Isles guest house, we could look over the harbour and saw various boats and ferries. It was Sunday morning, so not much activity – though the CalMac ferry sneaked out for Armadale while we were loading up the bike. We rolled out of Mallaig along the recently upgraded Fort William road. This set the tone for much of the rest of the day, with a succession of uphill and downhill sections, but as with all new roads is a bit soulless with wide and bare verges. Accordingly, we waited until we were on the banks of Loch Ailort before we stopped for a teabreak. This part of the west coast is rather pleasant, in no small part due to the broadleaf woodland. However there’s abundant house building along the lochside.

A long climb took us over to Loch Moidart. We stopped for lunch on the shore of Loch Moidart, watching herons fly by, and sea kayaks in the distance.

Another succession of climbs and descents took us to Acharacle, where the shop was unfortunately shut, this being Sunday! A few more miles saw us reach our destination, the Salen Hotel, on the edge of the Ardnamurchan peninsula, tomorrow’s route. After a very welcome hot shower, we wandered down to the bar for a beer and to make a reservation for dinner. Then a brief wander around Salen before returning to the hotel for dinner – warm goat’s cheese salad with aubergine chutney, followed by roast venison with a rather good fruity sauce. Dessert was Dutch apple crumble.

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