I call Glen Etive ‘the healing place’. This picture which was taken right at the entrance to the Glen. Sorry about the aerial!
When you turn onto the single track road the first thought that comes into your head is the 23rd Psalm. For you non-catholics, that’s the one that goes:
“Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…”. Now, some of you are saying “How can that be a healing place if you think of walking through the valley of the shadow of death?” Well, here’s the full 23rd Psalm:
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name’ sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:
For thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies;
Thou annointest my head with oil;
My cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the House of the Lord forever.
Now, I’m not a catholic, I’m not even christian, but some things ring true whether you attach any spiritual meaning to them or not. I don’t believe in God or Jesus, but the effect of being in Glen Etive is similar: it makes me feel rested and at peace, and so I can put my thoughts in order and revitalise my soul. You probably have to experience it to understand it.
Some miles along the track into Glen Etive I came across these wild deer foraging by the road:
It’s different seeing majestic animals in their natural environment, instead of behind wires at a zoo. I stayed there some time trying not to spook them, just taking in the vision of wild deer foraging in a wild forest of highland Scotland.
I took the opportunity for some walking whilst here and got over 100 photos. However I had to curtail my walking after a few hours as my left calf muscle is permanently cramping. I suspect a trapped nerve or something grr
After leaving Fort Augustus we drove west and found a beautiful loch called Loch Quoich. We had no idea how to pronounce it deciding that Koysh was probably the safest bet. Some of the scenery here was different to where we’d been. It was more green and forested like England, rather than the purple hues of heather and moorland.
Again we were lucky enough to get a lochside place to park and there was hardly anyone around so we stayed the night here as well.
The photos of the deer say it all for me. They walked past the camper in a long line, which was what woke us, and then headed down to the loch to drink.
We were still in bed but staring out of the window in awe. They were so dignified and cautious and it was all I could do to pull myself away to pick the camera up.
if I needed another reason to decide that this was the life for me then this was it. Imagine waking to this morning after morning?
A handful of photos.
So after a mad dash we get to Braemar. The landscape has changed now from rough mountains, to rolling moorland with epic views. You can see for miles and there are abandoned crofts and cottages which despite their ruinous state look so attractive in the landscape.
There’s also deer all over the place. I got to try the night vision on the Sony which adds a green hue to pictures. It’s no good for photos but it’s great just for seeing things.
We stopped in the heathland to make a barbecue and we saw the end of a rainbow. It was only a couple of hundred metres from us. We tried to reach it but it seemed to keep disappearing.
I have decided, I want to live the rest of my life in a camper travelling around the world. This is something I need to make happen!
Photos as ever…click on one to see a bigger version, then click on the photo to reduce it again.
We came back to Scotland. We’ve been all over the place since we were last here a few months ago, and loved everywhere we’ve visited. But we have a soft spot for the Sutherland area so we came back to spend some time just here.
We actually saw some wild deer, the first time we’ve seen any in Scotland. We were a little excited. Later on that night we had another campfire, just because we could. We got very drunk too on JD but hey ho life is to be enjoyed isn’t it.
A few photos.