A slow drive along SW Scottish coast

Today we drive down from Helensburgh (just NW of Glasgow), hugging the coast, ending in Ayr – about an hour SW of Glasgow. We first stopped at the most Starbucks-y looking coffee shop we have seen. It was a Costa Coffee shop, and the barista asked me if I wanted hot or cold milk in my Americano. I asked her what she recommended since we don’t get asked that in the US (pour in your own cold milk) and she said the hot milk would make the drink stay warmer. Of course!  Since we were purchasing to go (or “takeaway” as they say), I opted for the warm milk. Kellie also was given the choice of chocolate sprinkles on her mocha!

Then we hugged the coastline for a while, basically pulling over when something interesting showed up. We got to a beautiful spot on the coast and pulled into a large pull-out/passing lane/ rest area just above a rocky shore and the open ocean.

weymss bay scotland

Kellie at the place where we stopped. She was just stretching, but the sunlight was just right so out came the camera.    [yes, photographers, I noticed that the horizon is not level, but I like it anyway]

I wandered down on the rocks, checking out the current of the waves and how they rocked up against the rocks.  I took off my shoes and socks and carefully wandered my territory, which was down just above water level. This area was just below where our car was parked, but out of view of the road – several feet below and past some taller rocks. I had been wanting to use my new boardshorts and get in the Scottish waters, but I was feeling adventurous. I can confidently say that at 2:37pm, August 17th, in the ocean waters off of Weymss Bay, Scotland …..I went skinny dipping for the first time! No photos, sorry (?).

I had a camping packtowel which I used afterwards, snapped some photos of the area and view, then we headed on our way.  By the way, I lowered myself down the rocks, into the water. My research tells me it was about 57 degrees. I was breathing heavily and bobbing up and down in the waves…but didn’t notice that it was cold. I could see the rocks below me – they looked to be 6-8 feet down, but when I let go of the edge and lowered myself under water, I couldn’t touch the bottom, so that freaked me out.

Weymss Bay Scotland

the scene of the…crime?

Weymss Bay Scotland

more evidence!

Then down through a bunch of golf towns: Troon, Prestwick, Ayr (where we were staying) and further south where we reached a road which exhibits a phenomenon called the “electric brae.” You can look it up online and try to explain it to me…something to the effect that an outside viewer would think we were driving uphill when we weren’t?  Just south of that was a castle that popped into view along the coastline. Our handy-dandy GPS showed us exactly which road to take. This one:

Dunure Castle Road

Dunure Castle Scotland

Dunure Castle Scotland

Then down to Turnberry, which I know is a city famous for its golf course. I know that from playing Tiger Woods PGA Tour on Playstation 2. Turnberry looked like a city entirely made up of a beautiful golf facility.  I actually didn’t see any homes or stores. Hmm.

We're watching you

We’re watching you!

On to Belfast, Northern Ireland…. or, as it sounds to me, the beautiful Nartharn Are-land.


3 thoughts on “A slow drive along SW Scottish coast

  1. Great picture of Kellie. The lighting really was great!
    Congrats for being so adventurous. And it wasn’t even under the cover of complete darkness (my only experience w/skinny dipping).
    i love that picture of the dotted lines in the middle of the road. It makes me think of the cliche metaphor of “life is a highway” (also a song…) not a bad thing though.

  2. Great blog, Bobby! Where haven’t you been? Looks like I have a lot of travel photos to peruse for potential travel spots. I’ve been wanting to see Barcelona and Iceland for awhile. But of course I’ve started with your visit to Scotland– one of the few places I’ve been where everything’s new and different, but it still feels like home and there’s an odd feeling of belonging. (Must have been all the McKenzies I met and learned about . . . and perhaps the grave of Adam Smith.) Oh, and welcome to the Polar Bear Club, almost. 😉

    • Thanks for commenting, Tara. Iceland is surprisingly easy to reach from the US. Icelandair goes nonstop from Seattle, and it only takes about 6 hours, oddly. Barcelona was also really fun, but I was never able to feel safe – as you’ll see when you read that post.

      The top two places still on my list are Turkey and Greece. Convenient! We can be each other’s tour guides!

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