A stunningly beautiful journey, the Ratagan Pass seems to climb and twist forever. It reaches 1115 feet at it's highest point and is not to be missed, purely for it's amazing views down to Loch Duich and to the Five Sisters of Kintail mountain range. Make sure you make this trip on a clear, bright day for worthwhile photos.
The road begins at the head of Loch Duich, from Shiel Bridge and turns left after about a mile.Then the climbing begins and continues for a long way. Some of the hairpins have been widened and parts of the road are two lane but mostly it's single track, especially on the Glenelg side.
When the road was first built, in the 1700's by General Wade, the sheer drops over the edges were very much visible but now trees blot out the terrors of these drops and to us, it seemed fairly tame after our experience in the motorhome of boiling on the Applecross Pass!!! Parts of this mlitary road were improved in Victorian times by Thomas Telford and some of his corbelled bridges remain on today's road to Glenelg.
There are a couple of parks with stupendous views on the way up from Shiel Bridge. Do stop and take in the vista before you while your vehicle has a chance to cool down before the next climb. Once over the peak, it's plain sailing with a much straighter road as it becomes the old military road, with plenty of passing places. And finally it flattens out as you reach Glenelg, a pretty coastal village looking across the Sound Of Sleat.
We were extremely fortunate with the weather when we travelled this route. The day before, it was misty and raining so we delayed this journey until the following morning b which time the sun was cracking the tiles.
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Road Trip
Kyle Rhea Ferry To Skye
This tiny turntable ferry runs across the Sound of Sleat from near Glenelg to Kylerhea on the Isle of Skye. It's privately owned, after recently being bought, restored and operational once again. It's a great way to get to south eastern Skye, although, be warned, the road to Glenelg is steep as is the pass once you get across to the other side.
I think I recall the operators telling us maximum capacity was twenty passengers, whether they are in vehicles or not.
One wet day, we decided to support this local venture and cross on the ferry to Skye with the motorbike. The crossing is literally only a few miutes but the currents are fierce and when travelling against the tide, the ferry actually crosses sideways to combat it's force (photo no.4.)
On the Genelg side, there is a small carpark above the ferry slipway. There is nowhere to turn round once passed this. On the Skye side, I recall parking for two vehicles only, just before the slipway.
Return fare for a car and four passengers: £15
- Sailing and Boating
- Hiking and Walking