Outer Hebrides: Lochboisdale to Lochmaddy - Day3

Waking to the sound of oyster catches and curlews, I lay quietly, listening until the tent grew uncomfortably warm. Peering out above an oily calm sea, I basked in the morning sun, the air still fresh with just a hint of the night's chill. Stretching stiffened shoulders I lazed on the grass of our tiny island home; it was one of those mornings that must surely last forever; another brew; time to simply sit and stare.
Yet good weather can not be ignored, especially in this part of the world and so with the tents dried and boats loaded, we paddled north once more, crossing swiftly to Greanamul, 2km from our camp. Another short crossing and Benbecula was left behind, Eaval looming above the island of Ronay.
Staying to the east of the island, paddling beside low but dramatic cliffs, our pace had relaxed, the day's calm allowing intimate exploration of the rugged coast.
Deer watched as we slipped inside Flodaigh Mor for the first break of the day...
...a short walk on the island giving wonderful views across the Minch and of the channels below.
Beyond Ronay, we followed the wild and remote shore of North Uist...
...until after passing several caves and arches, we stumbled upon something quite different.
In the back of a small inlet, a narrow cave disappeared into the cliffs and as the low swell funnelled into the passage and then dropped away, we were treated to the best example of a blow hole in action that I have ever seen. White water churned within the cave as air was alternately sucked down through the hole above and then forced rapidly up and out, somewhere on the cliffs above. Nosing in as far as we dared, listening to the giant breathing within, we dallied here for some time, before pushing on once more, passing the narrow entrance to Loch Euphort and following the cliffs...
...to explore one last cave...
...and then pass inside Madadh Mor at the entrance to Lochmaddy.
On the northern shore just within the confines of the loch, we landed on a steep boulder beach for another wonderfully situated camp. In a freshwater loch just yards from the tents we washed our salt caked kit and refilled water containers; with the slip of Lochmaddy just 4km across the bay, it seemed we had cracked it. Later, as the forecast came in over the VHF, I knew we would have to work hard for each of those 4km.
As the wind freshened we moved into the lee of the cliffs, keeping warm by a roaring fire beneath a sky bright with stars.
Another perfect close to a wonderful day's paddling.

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