The visitor guide to the Cuillins on the Isle of Skye in Inner Hebrides -Scotland,  is with information about the place and the districts and small areas of attraction closeby. The guide also helps you to get to the place and find an accommodation there.

The district of Minginish is the wildest and least-populated part of the isle of Skye, but for many it is the greatest attraction, for this is where the Cuillins are to be found. This hugely impressive mountain range, often shrouded in rain or cloud, is the spiritual heartland of the island, and when it's clear their heart-aching grandeur can be appreciated from every other peninsula on Skye.Though officially called the Cuillin 'Hills', these are the most untamed mountains in Britain. The magnificent scenery and vast range of walks and scrambles have attracted climbers and walkers for centuries, but have also claimed many lives. It cannot be stressed too strongly that the Cuillins are the most dangerous mountains in Britain and only for experienced climbers.

There are three routes into the Cuillins: from the Sligachan Hotel; from Glen Brittle; and from Elgol. The eastern part of the range is known as the Red Cuillins. Their smoother, conical granite peaks contrast sharply with the older, darker gabbro of the jagged-edged Black Cuillins to the west. The latter are particularly suitable for rock climbing and best approached from Glen Brittle, while the former are accessed from the Sligachan Hotel. There are 20 'Munros' (mountains over 3,000 ft in height) in the Cuillins, with the highest being Sgurr Alasdair, at 3,251 ft. Though the sheer majesty of the mountains can only be appreciated at close quarters by the climber, there are impressive views from Elgol, from the road into Glen Brittle and, more distantly, from the west coast of Sleat.

Glen Sligachan is one of the most popular routes into the Cuillin range and the main access point for the more forgiving Red Cuillins, the walk to Loch Coruisk, or the ascent of Marsco. Every year there's a hill race up nearby Glamaig, which was climbed in 55 minutes (up and down) in 1899 by a Gurkha soldier - in bare feet!

OS Landranger No 32 OS Outdoor Leisure No 8

Guides and equipment for climbing the Cuillins

The following guides have all been recommended. Skye Highs, Mike Lates, 3 Luib, Broadford, Tel. 01471-822116. Cuillin Guides, Gerry Achroyd, Stac Lee, Glen Brittle, Tel. 01478-640289. Hugh Evans, 4d Wentworth St, Portree, Tel. 01478-612682. Richard MacGuire, 4 Matheson Place, Portree, Tel. 01478-613180. Colin Threlfall, at Outdoor Sports (see below). Two good shops for mountain gear are Cioch Direct, 4 Ullinish, Struan, Tel. 01470-572307, and Outdoor Sports; on Bridge Road (next to Skye Batiks), Portree. You can also try Skye Guides who offer year round guiding and tours

Sightseeing

One of the most rewarding drives on Skye is the 14-mile single-track road from Broadford to Elgol (Ealaghol), a tiny settlement near the tip of the Strathaird Peninsula, from where you can enjoy the classic view of the Cuillins from across Loch Scavaig and of the islands of Soay, Rùm and Canna. It was from here, on 4 July 1746, that the Young Pretender finally left the Hebrides. Before leaving, he was given a farewell banquet by the MacKinnons in what is now called Prince Charlie's Cave. There's also the added attraction of a dramatic boat trip to the mouth of Loch Coruisk, in the heart of the Black Cuillin. The glacial sea loch, romanticized by Walter Scott and painted by Turner, is over two miles long but only a few hundred yards wide, closed in by the sheer cliffs on either side and overshadowed by the towering mountains of black basalt and gabbro. Elgol is also the starting point for the walk to Camasunary. The road to Elgol also gives great views of Bla Bheinn (pronounced Blaven), best seen from Torrin, at the head of Loch Slapin.

Phone code: +44 (0)1471

Eating out 

The legendary rallying point for climbers who come to Skye for the Cuillins is the Sligachan Hotel, 7 miles south of Portree, where the A87 Kyleakin-Portree road meets the A863 to Dunvegan, Tel. 01471-8650204, Fax. 650207. The hotel's Seamus bar stocks an impressive selection of malts and also serves the island's real ales as well as meals. The campsite opposite is the most popular place to stay in the area.

Thursday, 18 April 2013 Print