“You have to be bold, to want to locate wildness, both within yourself and out there, in order to know it and to understand it…” These are the words of Annie Dillard from one of the students’ course readings titled The Quest for Wildness.
Our hiking excursion today certainly demanded “boldness” of us all. We experienced a second day of rain on Skye, which made our hike from Camasunary Bay to Elgol in the southern part of the island seem particularly daunting. We had a guide with us today, Ian Mackay, who helped us navigate some of the more difficult stream crossings on our walk along the coast. Given the extent of the rainfall on Skye over the last few days, we found ourselves up to our knees in water at times; so it was definitely reassuring to have Ian along. We took refuge in a “Bothy” (shelter) in the middle of our hike, which gave us the opportunity to dry out and refuel before venturing out again to complete our journey. Luckily, the students were all prepared with appropriate rain gear and good boots, but getting drenched was still unavoidable.
We had hoped to visit Spar cave at the end of our outing today, but we weren’t able to time the tides accurately enough to gain access. We were forced to turn back and climb the fern lined path from the shore back to the village of Elgol where our driver had agreed to meet us for transportation back to Carbost….