2023-09-14 Carradale, Mull of Kintyre – Windy!

Having left Arran via the Lochranza ferry, we headed down the single track road on the Mull of Kintyre to Carradale. The first night we were there there was an almighty storm, but the following morning the winds eased and I was able to get out in my boat. It was still fairly windy, but nothing like the previous nights winds. Carradale Beach is a lovely sandy beach about a kilometre long. As you can see from the video it is a stunningly beautiful location. We had been warned that Carradale can get quite midgy, but probably due to the previous nights storm and high winds there wasn't a midge to be seen or felt.

I paddled around the bay and out to the point. Rounding the point I came across a group of wild feral goats on a small beach. Although I didn't know that at the time these wild goats can be quite elusive. It wasn't until I met a couple of walkers later on, who told me they had been searching for the wild goats all day, without success. They didn't seem so pleased when I told them where I had seen them. Further on, with fabulous views of Arran, I eventually came to Carradale Harbour. I had a paddle into it, said hello to a couple of fishermen and carried on. It's not the prettiest of harbours and quite industrial, but the view from the harbour looking out across to Arran are superb.

Ferry from Lochranza
Ferry from Lochranza

Back in Carradale Bay, it was high tide and I was able to explore a little way up into Carradale Water, a small river flowing into the bay from the surrounding hills. The river is very peaty and visibility must have been a few centimetres at most. Proceeding with caution upstream, I paddled as far as I could until I hit a couple of rocks, before turning around and heading back downstream. By now the tide had turned and river was ebbing quickly. I had to be extra careful avoiding some stepping stones across the river, which had been completely covered on my way upstream. Just before the sea on the left bank were lots of old wooden stakes in the bank. They looked like they had been there for hundreds of years. And I think they probably had been there all that time, perhaps as an old jetty. I could just imagine a settlement being there since or even before the Viking times. The Vikings have been a major influence in Scotland, with Scandinavian influences lasting into the 15th century and aspects of their influence still lingering today. The name Carradale is probably of Viking origin, with dale or dalr being Norse for valley.

Another lovely Scottish paddle!

Distance: 6.3nm Time: 1 hour 45 mins

GPS track 

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