the rocks here just before midnight on the 31st January 2011. Fortunately, despite a gale and the surrounding cliffs and mountains, all 14 men on board were airlifted to safety by the Stornoway coastguard helicopter.
The geology here is very complex, Bloodstone Hill lies at the boundary of granite and Torridonian sandstone. It is also covered with sedimentary conglomerate rocks containing igneous rocks from the eruption which formed the Cuillin of Rum. These sedimentary rocks are then covered with lava flows that are younger than the Rum eruption and which probably came from the later Mull eruption to the south. If you look carefully at the top slopes of Bloodstone Hill, you can see where these lavas have flowed over the top of the hill and started to run down ancient river valleys. The lava solidified before it got to the sea and has left steep escarpments.
Bloodstone is one of the finest rocks for making stone tools. Our ancestors have been visiting Rum to quarry bloodstone for at least 7,500 years; a camp with a heap of hazel nut shells has been carbon dated to that time. Bloodstone arrow heads and axe heads have been found at great distances from the lonely isle of Rum. These people worked and traded bloodstone 3,000 years before the first stone was laid in an Egyptian pyramid.
June 2006I have twice before landed by sea kayak at Guirdil. Both occasions were in summer but one was very windy. We landed near high tide on banks of uprooted kelp.
This is Guirdil bothy where Ian and I planned to stay for two nights.
The following day we hoped to circumnavigate Canna from here and return for the second night.
In life you need to create opportunities in which good luck might happen. Both Ian and I have a very flexible view to planning. We had allowed sufficient time to arrive at Guirdil and paddle somewhere else, we had brought tents and I knew of a good camp site on Canna, which we could reach by night fall...