Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Day 20 May 30th - Broadford

Day 20 May 30th - Broadford
Originally uploaded by rhesus42.
Today's Track

Today's picture is of the Jacobite, the daily steam service that runs from Fort William to Mallaig along the West Highland line. The locomotive is being fuelled and watered.

I shouldn't have been able to take this picture. The train does not arrive in Mallaig until lunch time. By then I should have been well on my way to Elgol, on Skye. However, at breakfast, my hosts in Mallaig reported that all Skye ferry sailings for the day had been cancelled. The ferry had engine trouble. This was a bit of a blow, since my entire itinerary was based on making it onto Skye today. The couple who were hosting me in Mallaig were very familiar with the workings of the ferries. It turns out that he had recently retired as port manager for the ferry company. A phone call confirmed that there would be a sailing later in the day using a different ship. It meant that I would be able to get to my next stop in Broadford but that I would have most of the day to kill in Mallaig. After buying a ticket to make sure I would get on the sailing, I mooched around Mallaig, trying to stay dry and getting a few photos. Checking at the station, I discovered that the Jacobite had just started its service for the season, and that it would be arriving at lunch time. So that was one hour taken care of. While I was photographing the harbour, Luc cycled into town. He also was looking for a ferry to Skye. After the photo session with the Jacobite, and a conversation with some French motorcyclists, we managed to get a table in the local fish restaurant for lunch. Mallaig fills up for a couple of hours with the people from the train and then empties when they leave.

The crossing to Skye left when promised and I was able to make it the 17 or so miles to Broadford easily, despite the continuing head winds.

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