I could not have asked for a lovelier last evening on my visit to Harris. After I had finished my picnic tea, and communed with the cattle for a bit after my afternoon in the Uists, I drove back up the West Side. I stopped at the golf course to admire the clouds on top of Chaipaval:
The light below the lid of clouds was growing more intense:
I thought about going down onto Traigh Iar, but it was chilly, and besides which three photographers with tripods and huge zoom lenses appeared, which gave me an (admittedly feeble) excuse not to! I do love this beach, though. You can just see the standing stone on top of the hill. This is where the Clan MacLeod had their meeting place in former times.
I went on to Seilebost beach. You park your car near the school (sadly now closed, but it’s a campervan rental agency at the moment), and then walk across the machair and up across the dunes overlooking the beach.
I didn’t quite have the energy to climb down onto the beach itself, but enjoyed the view:
The sun was sinking ever lower:
I left and drove back towards Scalpay. As I climbed the steep brae past the Laxdale fishery, the colours in the sky were becoming quite dramatic:
A moment later I was rewarded with this:
I was grateful that there happened to be a safe place to pull over along there. So often on Harris the most marvellous sights greet one, but stopping safely to take a photo isn’t possible.
As I crossed the Scalpay bridge, I saw what might well have been an eagle swooping around over the narrow kyle (strait).
The colours of the sky and the crepuscular rays just seemed to get more and more intense as I went along:
And then, the last colours fast receded from the cloud cover:
That evening, I went to Catriona’s house for a wee visit. As usual she served me several kinds of baked goods and cakes, as well as tea. She had a lovely peat fire going, and we sat knitting and talking. I felt so very privileged.
If you are wondering what a “wally dog” is, they are iconic porcelain dogs that many traditional Scottish houses have near the fireplace. “Wally” is a Scots word for porcelain. There was an interesting discussion of the word in the comments of my post on The Tenement House!
And so my three days in Harris were nearly at an end. I had been pretty busy, really, apart from my morning of reading and knitting on the first day. But they say “a change is as good as a rest” and besides, meeting up with dear friends was just as important to me as communing with the beautiful colours and landscapes of the Isle of Harris.
In my next post, I’ll take you back to Glasgow – but I don’t blame you if you don’t want to go!