Sunday, 17 November 2013

Loch Ba.

For years I've looked at Loch Ba as I've driven across Rannoch Moor on the way north and wondered what it would be like to explore. Today Graeme, Sean and I found out. We met at the newly completed road bridge over the river Ba and carried (and dragged) the canoes down to the water's edge.
It was a short scrape down the end of the river to the start of Loch Ba.

The weather was a little more overcast than we'd hoped it'd be but that did lend a bit extra moodiness to the already atmospheric scenery.

Loch Ba is quite shallow and there are many small rocky outcrops sticking out of the water as well as some small islands. We decided to land on the largest of these islands on our way back after we'd explored the northern and eastern extremities of the loch.

Photo courtesy of Graeme. 

It's very easy to become disorientated as the loch meanders, narrows and widens but soon we noticed the water flowing indicating that we were approaching the start of the Abhainn Ba (the river that flows out of Loch Ba eastwards and into Loch Laidon). Graeme and I had walked to this point back in January when we explored Loch Laidon ( ). We beached the canoes and had a quick bite to eat while Graeme decided whether or not to attempt running the river.

Graeme decided to run the first part of the river on the basis that he'd have to drag his canoe back up across the moor which would be time consuming if he went too far. Sean and I followed him down the bank watching and taking photos. 

Once he'd reached a wider pool at the bottom of the first section of the river Graeme turned round and paddled and hauled his boat back up. 

Once back at the outflow we set off back against the current towards the main loch. Sean dragged my canoe up some of the bits that were too shallow to paddle tandem (as he had his drysuit on). 

Once we'd negotiated the shallows it was back in the boat and head back towards the largest island, Eilean Molach.
Photo courtesy of Graeme.

We landed on Eilean Molach on a nice sandy beach and had a wander round the lovely wooded isle. 

Once back on the water we followed the southern shore back towards our put in at the bridge. 

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