17.09.2011 - 17.09.2011
The weather wasn't great today so we opted for another low-level walk by the coast, not far from where we had gone walking yesterday. In fact, we had good views of the Kerrysdale Forest and the second half of yesterday's walk. Today's walk began with a 10 minute stroll along a 4wd track before we headed off up the side of a hill on a water-logged walking track following a sign to the Fairy Lochs crash site. We emerged at a low saddle and saw a bunch of people on the small hill we wanted to bag. They turned out to be a bunch of boys and a couple of men, perhaps a scout group or a school group. They said they were staying at the local hostel. Yay for having our own self-catering accommodation!
I eyed up a nice route up the rocky top of the hill. The name of the hill is Sithean Mor. Mor means 'big' but at 225m this is the lowest hill I've bagged on the trip. Still, height doesn't matter as much as interest. And we added interest to the walk by spending a happy hour scrambling and free-climbing some rock slabs. Louise wasn't impressed when I shimmied up a route that she wasn't keen on, especially since she is a climber and I'm not. She will say something about me kicking a loose rock and then using it to propel myself onto a rock ledge where she plaintively called out "I'm stuck" when she tried the same thing. It seems short legs can be an advantage at times.
After rock playing we continued our walk circumnavigatinga small loch and then finding the crach site mentioned on the sign posts. A US airplane was on its way home from the war in 1945 with nine crew and six passengers when it crashed in the area and all lives were lost. There is a plaque with the men's names, ranks and ages (almost all in their early 20s). There is still wreckage strewn around. It's thought an engine caught fire and the pilot reduced altitude to put the fire out. They were also slightly off course so didn't realise they were still over land. It's probable the engine exploded and the plane wreckage ended up scattered over 2kms. A sad story.
From the crash site we set off again using our mix of navigation styles across the boggy ground (everything is either boggy or rocky, there isn't really a middle ground) to pick up the original 4wd track and follow it back to the car. We thought there was a pub/hotel in the area we could have a drink/early meal at but after a bit of to-ing and fro-ing realised this wasn't going to work for us so it was back to the self-catering croft for our own home-cooked meal.