Saturday, February 15, 2014

Lismore Day Trip - 2

The sea-fog was thick as the ferry approached Lismore. But soon the old pier house at Achnacroish came into sight to announce that the skipper had not lost his way.

Once ashore I made the easy, mile-long climb up to the main road that runs along the spine of the island. There were three things I wanted to do on Lismore: visit the ruin of Acadun Castle, walk to the tidal island of Bernera to see the site of Columba's Noble Yew, and then climb the Barr Mor, the islands highest point.

On reaching the main road I turned left (south) then, five minutes later, came to a small track at Baligrundle. It branched off to the west, and after following it for two miles the 13th century Achadun Castle came into view.

From where I was on the track I could not see any sort of path leading across the field to the castle, so it was time to go cross country. It was raining on and off, and the ground looked boggy, so I donned waterproofs and gaiters, and then set out across the open country to the castle. It was slow going; a mile of wet patches of tall grass set between a series of soupy bogs. As I continued to the southwest the castle, seen against the skyline, began to look quite dramatic. 

Once I climbed the knoll to the castle I could see that it was in a very ruinous state; jagged stumps of walls and towers ready to fall in a strong wind.

Acadun is also known as the Bishop's Palace, as it was once home to the Bishop of Argyll. Which was convenient as his Cathedral lay just a few miles to the north. For more information on the castle see this link, and for a description of a better way to reach the castle than my route back in 1998, see this link.

My next stop was to be the tidal island of Bernera, which lies a few hundred yards west of the castle. From atop the castle knoll I could not see the crossing point, but as I thought the tide was low I set out towards the crossing. I had high hopes to step onto an island I'd wanted to see for many years. But as you'll learn next time, those hopes would be dashed to bits.

No comments:

Post a Comment