Sunday, September 12, 2010

Goat bhuna and the Mull of Cara

From the Boathouse on Gigha, we made our way south through a series of skerries. The Mull of Kintyre and the pointed summit of Cara lay beyond the skerries.

We soon picked up a convoy of curious common seals who followed us through the channels. (Thanks to Will for identification.)

Phil and I in the kayaks got through shallow gaps that Donald could not risk with his outboard motor.

After crossing from Gigha to Cara, we made our way down the west coast of Cara. The water became increasingly rough as we approached...

...the south end where the small tide race was flooding northwards at its height, as we were now 3 hours after slack water. There is a gap in photos as for about 400m, both hands were required to be on the paddle to maintain an upright posture. Donald's little boat managed remarkably well, despite the Mull of Kintyre disappearing from sight every so often.

The water flattened off once we had rounded Cara's SW point and we were able to photograph the Mull of Cara which is its most southerly point. It is only 49m high but it is a rather impressive sight from a small boat.

We now made our way up the east coast of Cara in sheltered water to this magnificent shell sand beach. The rocky shore to its south had some pretty smelly goats on it but they are far fewer in number since a Yorkshire gentleman, with a chain of Indian restaurants, brought a refrigerated lorry and some friends with rifles north to Kintyre. When I was in the Punjab, I developed a taste for goat bhuna, though I tended to leave the trotters at the side of the plate. I hope this gentleman returns soon, as there really are too many goats on Cara. After his last visit, the spring flowers were seen in profusion for the first time in many years.


  1. Hi Douglas
    Hoping to get to this area in the near future so an interesting post...not sure about the goat bhuna mind you!
    And - Forgive the nitpicking but are those not common seals? I know the young greys can look very similar...genuinely curious as I've been mistaken in the past and no doubt will be in the future.

  2. Hi Will I hope you enjoy your visit to Gigha. It is probably the island I have visited most on camping trips!

    I think you are right about the seals. Although I thought the one in front had a high Roman nose I think its nostrils are too "V-ed" for a grey.

    Most of the seals we saw that day were definitely the larger greys but the day after we saw greys and commons hauled out together on the same rock at the north end.


  3. Hi Douglas

    This trip must be up there with the very best ! Just looking at those pictures helps one get through the dullest of autumn days.

    The "Goat bhuna" made me :) ! Just a thought. What a place for an Indian restaurant ?! On second thoughts ! ;)


  4. Thanks Phil, it was a truly great trip, it was great sharing it with yourself and Donald.