Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Calgary Bay

Mull is an island of surprises to the person who assumes it is all about climbing Ben More, visiting Iona, spotting an otter and going home. To the person like me, for example.

Calgary Bay:

And one of the things we did not know about Mull is its collection of fine beaches. There are superb beaches at the tidal island of Erraid for example, we knew about that. And there are other beaches tucked away on the Ross of Mull.

Beach at Fidden, Mull:

But we did not know about the beaches of North Mull, the superb Langamull beach for example. And we had never been to the only one that is widely known beyond Mull - Calgary Bay.

On arriving we discovered a wonderful sculpture trail, Calgary Art in Nature. It is free to wander round with donations accepted.

Here's a clever metal pea-pod with beach boulders for peas:

The trail is set in a beautiful wood tumbling down the hillside from the cafe to the shore.

Ferns real,

and imagined...

At the edge of the wood the sun came out and we could see the beach below us.

There is something special about these pockets of ancient, windswept woodland that run the length of Britain and Ireland's west coasts.

At the edge of the North Atlantic Rainforest:

The 'golden hour' was just passed as we reached the beach. A fine sunset instead.

The house in the distance is Calgary House. Lt-Col James Macleod, Hebridean-born Commissioner of the Mounties in the later 19th century, was inspired to christen the city of Calgary in Alberta in its honour having enjoyed excellent hospitality at Calgary House.

We are a long way from the gleaming city of over 1 million people here. The entire population of Mull is only 2,800. Only two of them were out on the beach with us on this fine sunset.

As we made our way back through the trees the trail took us past more sculptures. With stags roaring in the gloaming in the hills all around us the sculptures seemed to gain presence in the fading light, hurrying us back to our car.

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