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Scottish anchorages


Not in the Sailing Directions, distinctly unpromising industrial scenery. But there is a castle to inspect. It is tricky getting ashore along this bit of coast, here there is a stony beach but a bit steep for comfort. I prefer to row up the burn that flows down past the south side of the castle and land there. Then scramble up to the quarry road, over a wall, round to the west side of the castle and another scramble up to it. It stands on a knoll overlooking the Lynn of Morvern, and then of course you see the Glensanda quarry. The only coastal quarry in the UK, the largest granite quarry in Europe, it opened in 1986, and is I fear a blot on the landscape. 6.5 million tons of granite came out of it in 2014. And it won't all be taken out until 2100. You see it from more or less everywhere on the west side of Lismore, worse at night because of the lights. But, a big but, it does avoid the granite having to be driven out on roads, indeed it is inaccessible by land. And it does employ a lot of local people, about 200, with many more knock-on jobs locally. More good than bad I imagine. It looks pretty amazing when you sail close past it, a vast industrial complex with an almost cubist look to the buildings climbing up the mountainside. It would surely be a great location for a James Bond film.


The castle is 15th century. There are two storeys, the walls have been stabilised, but there is no roof. It was a Maclean stronghold but they abandoned it around 1800. Given there is no access from the land by any sort of road, that it is not in the Sailing Directions, and landing is not that easy except in calm conditions, you are unlikely to have to share the view down Loch Linnhe from the front door.

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Glensanda Glensanda

The view south from Glensanda Castle

The Glensanda coastal quarry