WARNING

The route from Torr Fada to Ardalanish and also through Glen Forsa is VERY rough going. The ground has many holes in it, often hidden under heather or grass - it's as though folk have taken stones out of the ground leaving the holes behind. Consequently you need to take great care when walking in these areas and it will also take much longer than expected to traverse the terrain.


David Balfour was washed ashore on Erraid which, as he found out, is actually an island separated by about 100m of sand from Mull. The sand is normally covered at high tide so check the Links page for the tide tables. The bay (295196) is at the western side of the island and is a lovely spot. If you decide to camp on the island then do take enough water as there are not many streams. When on the island you should also see the observatory with the nearby quarry for the lighthouse stone, and also the lighthouse keepers' cottages.
    
    Ben More from Erraid:


    
    
The main road from Fionnphort to Fishnish seems to be the obvious route. However as it is just 50 miles, and David travelled 100 miles, then it is less likely. There are lots of different possible routes across Mull with the following being one that gives a good introduction to Mull.
    
Starting from Erriad go to the end of the road (314202) near Knockvologan where there are some farm buildings and the start of a trail. Follow this trail up Torr Fada (323194) and carry on to the old village of Breac Achadh (335185), and then on to the village of Tir Fhearagain (337187):

  
                  
    
 The quality of the Stone work in Tir Fhearagain is remarkable. Note the rounded corners of the buildings - designed to handle the high winds! These villages are typical of the type that David Balfour would have come across on his journey. 

Near Loch an Sgalain (347192 looking East towards Malcolm'sPoint):
    
    
Head south past Breac Achadh towards the coast at Traigh Gheal and then East over the hill and down to the stile in the deer fence at 351173. Continue north and then east to climb up Beinn a Choal-airigh where there are great views to be had.

All along the Ross of Mull there are opportunities to see birds of prey like golden eagles, sea eagles, short-eared owls, deer, seals, etc.

Looking west from Beinn a Choal-airigh:                           Looking west to Uisken from the 'Last Look Back Cairn':

looking west from beinn a choal-airigh   

Drop down to the north and then east past another old village to pick up the track at 366182. Follow this track before dropping down to the old Iron Age Fort of Dun an Fheurain and then on to Ardalanish Farm for a cup of tea or coffee and have a look at their weaving mill.

Continue along the road to Uisken and then head towards Scoor and investigating the area and Kilvickeon Chapel before following the track into the forest to 412208.

Stones of Kilvickeon Chapel:                                                  Paps of Jura from Uisken:
 


Head east through the forest (watch out for deer crossing the track) to 474197 where you take the gully between Eas Criarachain and the waterfall of Dearg Bhealach down to the beach and then travel east along the base of the cliffs towards the Carsaig Arches and follow the path at the foot of these spectacular cliffs until you get to Carsaig. Please be aware that this is a very tricky section with steep ground and is particularly dangerous above the Carsaig Arches.

  The gully down to the waterfall:                                         Malcolm's Point:

  

The spectacular Carsaig Arches:                                            Feral goats on the beach:

 

 

From Carsaig follow the coastal path to Lochbui (note this section is not passable at high tide). Watch out for the rope up a rock step and please check it carefully before using it. There are several caves along this route and look for the old Run Rigs.

Check the rope first!:                                                                   One of many caves:

  

There is a tricky crossing  of the burn before the Glenbyre Cottage where you join a track into Lochbuie.

A tidal cave:                                                         East towards Lochbuie:

  

Take the path north from 615256 through to Glen More at 623303. Carry on through Glen More to the start of Glen Forsa at 643329.           

Old road through Glen More:                                             At the start of the Glen Forsa track:

  
   
Follow this track north until it ends and then pick up the path (rough and boggy!) leading to an old village (641344).
   
 Head to the deer fence on the western edge and cross the stile (a little to the south). Continue heading north until you reach a gate at 638354 where you cross it and follow the edge of the wood.

The stile:                                                                                           Northern Glen Forsa:

  
    

 You will soon reach a track that goes all the way to Pennygown (595427).  Also note that there is a bothy at Tomsleibhe (618372).
 From Pennygown follow the main road round to Fishnish which is likely to have been the Torosay in the book, or carry on to Craignure if you need the Oban ferry.
    

The old inn at Fishnish:                                                                                       Fishnish to Lochaline Ferry:

       <-- Walk this way!