The Armin Grewe Homepage
Walk 6
  • Description: Tarbert Estate to Loch Tarbert and back on the Isle of Jura
  • Walk leader: Gordon Muir
  • Distance: approx 9 miles
  • Weather: slightly cloudy early on, turning into beautiful sunshine
  • Participants: 24

After all the rain the previous two days we were nervous how this day would turn out, would we be able to walk on Jura? But then the day couldn't start any better, when I woke up and opened the curtains it was a glorious sunny morning.

Picture of the Sound of Islay looking north towards Colonsay
We took the 9:30 ferry over to Jura, the last clouds quickly disappearing. From the ferry we drove to Tarbert Estate to meet Gordon Muir who would lead us on this walk.

After a quick introduction we were ready to leave. The walk started with a climb up the hill, quickly giving us great views over the Sound of Jura to Knapdale and Kintyre. In the haze we could also make out the silhouette of Arran, although we would get an even better view of Arran later when we returned.

We continued over hills, through glens, past a number of lochs and lochans, sometimes catching a glimpse of the Paps of Jura towering over the hills. There were a few burns to cross, everyone managed to get over safely. After a few miles we first saw Loch Tarbert, our destination for the day.

Picture of walkers leaving from Tarbert Estate, the Sound of Jura in the background
Picture of walkers heading into the hills of Jura Picture of the descent to Loch Tarbert
Picture of a waterfall Picture of an eagle high in the skyThe views to Loch Tarbert were impressive, the water bright blue in the sun. In the distance we could see Colonsay and Oronsay, sometimes Mull was also visible over the hills of Jura.

Our descent to Loch Tarbert continued, just before we arrived Ian spotted an eagle soaring high in the sky. Unfortunately I didn't have the opportunity to change my lens, so the picture on the right is as good as it gets.

We had lunch on a ridge overlooking Loch Tarbert, close to an impressive waterfall. From the ridge I climbed down to the beach to take a picture of the waterfall and get a better view of the "beach" (there wasn't a sandy beach, mainly large pebbles). After a good rest it was time to start heading back.

Turning north-east for the way back we climbed up a hill from where we had another great view over Loch Tarbert. This view is also available as a QuickTime VR panorama of the view over Loch Tarbert:
Picture of a panoramic view over Loch Tarbert
Picture of a group of walkers listening to explanations Before we lost Loch Tarbert out of view again we stopped and Gordon gave an overview of the area, pointing out various places visible in the distance.

Being the gamekeeper of Tarbert Estate he also told us about the hunting they do at the estate. He explained some interesting rules and conventions hunters and gamekeepers live and work to as well as how they transport any deer they shot back to the lodge. The Tarbert Estate is the only estate still using horses when possible to carry out work.

Through a number of glens we continued our walk back to the east, again crossing a number of burns on the way. Water bottles were filled with fresh water, especially as the sun had come out quite strong by now and it was nice and warm.

Picture of a view over the Sound of Jura to Kintyre and Arran

After a few hours out in the hills we returned to the east coast of Jura. It had cleared up further and we had a great view over to Knapdale, Kintyre and even to Arran. I was impressed of the view over to Arran, as during my holidays in summer 2004 I had stood on Goatfell and looked over to Jura (among other places).

As we had some time left we stopped at the Jura Hotel for a well-earned pint in the hotel garden before catching the evening ferry back to Islay. Many thanks to Gordon for a great day and a very nice walk!

Picture of the silhouette of the Isle of Arran Picture of people sitting at tables in a bar garden

A Wet Start <- WalkIslay 2005 -> Beinn Bheigier