This was my first ever bothy trip. Toscaig was a start point of our walk to Uags bothy. My boyfriend and I arrived there at 8 15 pm after a long journey through windy highland roads and parked the car. While we tried to minimize the size of our bags as much as possible and carried only necessities, they were still quite heavy. We aimed to get to the bothy before it would get dark. The first part of the path was very boggy until it eventually disappeared. Once we passed through it, we walked through moorlands and rocks. After around an hour and a half, we took a break, which did not last very long as we were getting eaten alive by the midges. Even the midge nets did not help as they were biting through them. It was starting to get dark and we were getting worried that we would not get to the bothy before the nightime. We had our tent with us just in case, but with either a boggy or a rocky terrain everywhere, it would have been pretty difficult to find a good spot for camping. So we continued walking with hope of finding the bothy, admiring beautiful rock formations.
Eventually, we found the precious European oak woodland, which according to the map, meant that we were not far away from the bothy. As we came out of the forest, we looked down the hill. There was the bothy! We made it ! It was already pitch black and we could not even see how far from the sea we were. As we opened the door, a voice shouted at us: ‘What time do you call this?’ There were a couple of guys already in the bothy. One of them gave up his day job to travel around UK bothies sleeping in a hammock . The other guy was fireman who used to be a tree surgeon and arrived to the bothy on a sea kayak. Sea kayaking is something I have never tried before but would really like to. It was an interesting evening, it is always great to meet like – minded people. As I went outside, all I could see was flashing eyes of deer, which were not far away.
The next day we woke up and went outside to have breakfast at a wooden table while looking at Eilean Mor and Raasay in the distance. After breakfast, we walked to the Northern beach. It was a glorious day and the sun was shining. I went for a dip in the sea but did not stay there for very long as there were jelly fish swimming around. Once I came out, we sat there enjoying the perfect moment and the beautiful surroundings. It was my boyfriend’s birthday. As he said:
‘If only we could now see a sea eagle, this would make my birthday special’ a sea eagle appeared, flying above our heads and doing a little dance just for us. This really made this day special and he could not have asked for a better birthday present. Later on, we went to explore the area a little more and enjoyed the sunshine.
The next day, as we were packing to leave, another sea kayaker arrived. He said that he was a keeper of the bothy and that he came to pick up the rubbish. We were going to take the rubbish with us, so it was a great relief, knowing that we would have less to carry on the way back! We left the bothy around midday. It must have been more than 25 degrees and I was wearing shorts and a sleevles top. I was starting to get sunburnt, so covered myself with a towel, as I did not have a thin long- sleeved top with me. Who would have thought that you can get sunburnt in Scotland!
Here is a little live photo – where you can see the view from Uags bothy
…and a picture of the bothy below
What an amazing idea mountain bothies are…They are free and for everyone. It feels so special being able to stay in a house in the middle of nowhere and have a fire on at night. Thank you for all those lovely volunteers and responsible tourists who help looking after the bothies. Will definitely visit more of them.