By Loch Faskally

Willie Shand ©

Willie takes a sunny walk by Loch Faskally in Perthshire.

This morning, the peak of Ben Vrackie above Pitlochry was looking extremely tempting.  With blue skies and sunshine virtually guaranteed for the whole day, the plan was for something less strenuous. Instead, it was to be a nice easy walk by the shores of Loch Faskally.

Happy Ducks

A mile or so to the north of Pitlochry, the village of Moulin is maybe not the closest place to park but it does make for a fine start, walking down by Lettoch Farm and the Golf Course to meet the loch at Pitlochry Boating Station Café.  And what could make a better introduction to the loch than a cappuccino while being greeted by dozens of hungry ducks.  Hungry they certainly are not – they’re fed by everyone and their granny from morning to night.

Crossing Clunie footbridge. Pic by Willie Shand.

The wooded south side of the loch leading to Fonab Castle Hotel and Pitlochry Dam is a particularly pleasant stretch with great uninterrupted views to Ben Vrackie.

Beyond the Festival Theatre – ‘Scotland’s Theatre in the Hills’ – a wobbly foot suspension bridge takes us over the fast-flowing River Tummel to return above the opposite shore.

A Rocky Crossing

In bygone times the river would be crossed here by ferryboat.  By all accounts this wasn’t always the safest of crossings and most using it would follow the ritual of popping a coin or brass tack for luck into the well of St Bride before stepping aboard.

Ben Vrackie looks inviting. Pic by Willie Shand.

Time for another coffee stop at the gravity-defying terrace café of Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre.  That’s all that was needed to help make up my mind to revisit the Ben in the afternoon.

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Catch up with more of Willie’s travels around Scotland.

Willie Shand