NC500 - 3-10 September 2017

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NC500 - 3-10 September 2017

Post by white exec » 22 Sep 2017, 13:21

Well, we did it.

Davie and I met up in Fort William on Sunday 3 September, and did a quick 'off piste' run in his much-loved 205 to Glenfinnan and Mallaig. It rained all the way, but didn't spoil seeing a Black Five in full steam at Mallaig station. The rain was pretty heavy, I can tell you.

Back in Fort William, we found our hotel - the rather splendid Cruachan - and had a good meal and overnight there. Next morning, the 205 was parked up somewhere decent, and the two of us set off for Applecross and all things North . . .
Some grey mornings always brightened by lunchtime
The extraordinary view to Loch Maree on the A832 near Achnasheen
We resisted the temptation to check out the underside...
And sometimes others set the pace...
The QM's Castle of Mey
The magnifcent sea-stacks at Duncansby Head
And back along Loch Ness - Urquhart Castle
At Spean Bridge, the road was cleared to make way for four of these . . . rear steering essential
Back safely in Fort William
And without Davie, none of this would have happened. A terrific travelling companion and co-driver, who made it all something to really remember.
Then for me, back South through Glencoe
...and a stop to explore Bridge of Orchy station, now a Highland Way B&B.
None of these West Highland Line stations are now manned, although the line still operates.
After a couple of days' R&R in Hampshire, the return ferry hop to Caen was found also carrying a TR6 Rover V8, en route into France, and a tad raucous. The owner said he'd happily swap it for the XM comfort-wise...
With an overnight stop in western France (Poitiers) and another in northern Spain (Burgos), I got home to Andalucia late afternoon on Saturday 16 September - 19 days and 4747 miles after leaving, at a not unrespectable 42mpg.

The trip not only included our NC500, but an intriguing visit to my old college at Padgate, where I started my degree course exactly fifty years ago. As if that weren't enough, I managed to finally meet up with both Jim at MK, and John from I am now lying down somewhere quiet and dark.

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Re: NC500 - 3-10 September 2017

Post by KennyW » 22 Sep 2017, 22:17

Fantastic, sorry I couldn't come but new job and father very ill. I had to cancel holiday the previous week to Golspie (26th Aug to 2nd Sept)

Finally my father passed away on Wed 20th hence the reason I have not been on the forum much over the past 2 months.

The NC 500 has been given a lot of publicity the past month or so. BBC Alba and the travel show on BBC news.

If this becomes and annual event I would be interested to pass my knowledge of the area on.


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Re: NC500 - 3-10 September 2017

Post by CitroJim » 24 Sep 2017, 04:35

Chris, most excellent :D Really enjoyed all the pictures and adventures!

Great to meet you too :D We could have talked and talked well into the night I reckon. We must meet up again very soon!

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Re: NC500 - 3-10 September 2017

Post by daviemck2006 » 24 Sep 2017, 09:50

It was a good week in good and knowledgeable company. Even managed to talk about a taboo subject on here, politics, it turns out that Chris and I have very similar thoughts there despite me being Scottish, and him English living in Spain. Thats all I shall say on here, although I could talk about it for hours! I did not take many photos, having took a lot a couple of months ago last time round. Most of the local workers in the more senic west coast part of the route were of foriegn, often eastern european disposition, but all had good english and very friendly and loved staying and working where they were. I always think the east coast is much less senic and less to do than the west, this is possibly due to me, for many years having a caravan at Grannies Heilan Hame at Embo, and working the boat out of Scrabster, therfore driving up and down the A9 north of Inverness weekly, sometimes twice weekly. I would be up for doing it again at some point in the future, it would be great to get more people and cars doing it.