Latta Paddle

DSCF7140 Janette and Allan had their relatives staying and where keen to get out on the water. Renate, Emma and Ben live in Australia, so even though it was still our summer they probably found it a little chilli.

We set off in the canoes first, had a paddle around, played a few games, learnt a few skills and then got the kayaks out for a go in them. Whilst playing with the piranhas in the canoes Janette and Allan managed to do something I haven’t seen for a while – the boat almost capsized, tipping Allan out but Janette stayed in, nice and dry whilst Alan swam!  DSCF7132 DSCF7138 DSCF7139

Gooch Hamkin Canoe



The weather was looking dark but Caroline and Catherine were still keen to get out for a paddle. After a coffee at my house we set off to my local beach in Mellon Charles.

I took the opportunity to throw my self down onto the beach after slipping on a wet rock, I didn’t realise at the time that I had hurt my ribs – maybe if I had I’d have pestered Catherine to have a look at me since she’s a doctor!




We got on the water before the rain started and headed off to see where we got to. Catherine was able to provide lots of power from the back of the canoe due to her regular dragon boat racing, it was just the steering she had to get used to. Caroline was celebrating her birthday today, and what better way to do it than by getting drenched by the rain in a canoe!

The rain this evening was so heavy it washed away part of the single track road south from Gairloch, causing delays and diversions.

Taylor Canoe & Kayak


The Taylor’s where staying in Loch Ewe Cottage in Mellon Charles and had seen one of my adverts and noticed my canoe trailer at home. Linda wandered across one evening to see if she could book some paddling. I was able to fit her in and we chose to paddle from the beach a few hundred metres from here and their cottage.









They all knew what they where doing, so Colin and Linda opted for a canoe whilst Alasdair and Keith chose to try something new and paddle sea kayaks. It turned out that Colin was a marine biologist, so instead of me showing them the sights he showed us what lay beneath us.





Their was one creature that I had never seen before (and promptly forgot what it is called…), anyway here’s a poor picture of it

Howat Kayak



Chris and Lynne where staying in Mellon Charles on their travels so they thought it would be good to get out paddling to see things from a different level. We paddled from my local beach, and only a few hundred metres from where they where staying at Tranquility B&B.

It turns out Chris is also a scout leader, and in fact knows Rose and Jim (scout leaders) that I took out paddling a couple of weeks ago! We paddled around the rocky shoreline, spotting lots of jelly fish.


Fingland Kayak


David and Norma are regulars to the area, David has been coming up since he was a child to their family cottage by Aultbea. Since we’d been having a fantastic week of weather with practically no winds their little wayfarer dinghy wasn’t much use so they decided to come out in some kayaks.











We set out from their cottage and paddled along the coastline, getting used to the boats and practising some skills. Despite donning wetsuits from the start neither fell in and they both handled the boats well. They liked just how close in you can get in kayaks, fitting through the smallest gaps to see what’s hidden along the coastline.



Cumming Canoe & Kayak



This sunny afternoon was spent with the Cummings from Laide. Iain is a teacher at the local High School, he had won a half price voucher for a family paddle with me from the school’s S7 year fundraising event in aid of them going on an adventurous activities week.







To get the most out of this beautiful afternoon we set off initially in canoes. Soon everyone picked up the canoeing skills and after a few games we nipped back to the beach for hot chocolate, biscuits and to swap boats.






It wasn’t long before we where back out on the water, all in individual kayaks. The skills that had been learnt in the canoes where put to good use in the kayaks, with everyone zipping around like natural paddlers. By the end of the session everyone was fairly damp from the energetic splashing and games.

Fisher Canoe



The Fisher family where back in the area, so of course they wanted to get out canoeing again. Last year we had canoed over at Tollie Bay, so this year Mellon Charles seemed like a good place to paddle. We set off from the little beach, just down the road from my house.





Letty, Erin, Rob and Louise seemed to remember their paddling skills well. This meant I could have an easy session, sitting back as they paddled me around the coastline! We paddled around to their cottage’s beach before it was time to head back around, through the craggy coast.




Wendy & Simon Canoe

DSCF2334Wendy and Simon wanted a break from walking the local mountains, when they saw my notice in the hostel (Sail Mhor Croft Hostel) they decided it would be a good activity do rest their legs with. We paddled from my local beach at Mellon Charles and headed off around the rocky coastline to see what we could see at sea.

It was evident from the off that both Wendy and Simon had previous experience in boats, picking up the strokes easily and racing around. We saw a selection of birds, a seal, a huge number of moon jellyfish, but sadly for Wendy there where no otters out playing. Sorry, maybe next time.



Simon was keen to whiz around whilst Wendy wanted to get her paddling ready for a triathlon later in the year over near Loch Morlich – good luck with the race.

Since they where both doing so well I set them off paddling solo a the end to see how they faired. They both preformed well with the race at the end being pretty even.

A nip to the shop

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything, so I thought I’d put up a few pictures.

I only had a few things to do today, one of them being nipping to the shop. Would have been daft to drive on such a nice day.

Aultbea Stores



Aultbea Stores across the millpond like water.



Torridon Mountains






The mountains south towards  Torridon, snow covered and inviting.






An Teallach




An Teallach to the east, not the most rugged looking from this angle but we know it is really.









A spot of wild life watching on route – just a spot though.


Mellon Charles





Gentle paddling back home to Mellon Charles, a lovely little paddle out for milk and bread. I’ll have to find an excuse to nip to the shop tomorrow!



Wester Ross can be fantastic at this time of the year, not just the summer time.



MacTaggart Canoe & Kayak

The MacTaggart’s came along to my local beach for a fun time in canoes and kayaks. Ross is a keen kayaker so he jumped straight into one whilst Iona and Jenny crewed one canoe and Seumas and Anne set off in the other.



After some fun and games paddling around Anne’s confidence grew and she really wanted to try out a kayak. After a quick brew break, Anne and Seumas slipped themselves into kayaks. They both did just as well in sole control of a boat as they had tandem.



Since it was such nice weather we decided to see how our balance was, Iona ended up getting very wet. Just as I had the camera out – sorry!



Hindle Kayak


Hazel, Trevor and daughters Carolyn and Laura where staying in Beinn Eighe Cottage just across the field from me, so I thought we might as well use the little beach a couple hundred meters down the road.






We all set of from the beach in kayaks, seeing how the boats do, turns out that they spin quite well! After a fun session paddling around we rafted up to see if we could get wet. No point wearing wetsuits otherwise!


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