White Tail Rally
14 - 16 September 2012
It had been quite a few years since I'd had a real good jaunt around Scotland and then I learned, courtesy of The Mayflower Rally List, of The White Tail Rally on Mull and the Rally at The Edge on Vatersay. Further, the Squires could be done on the way home - adventure time.
George Perrin and Son Kris headed over from Llandudno, I set off from Saddleworth and called at Dave Wood's house in Bacup and we all met up at Lancaster Services on the M6. This was on the Thursday 13th September as I felt it prudent to break the journey up to allow for any problems e.g. punctures etc. With this in mind, I had booked us two twin rooms at the Travel Lodge at Helensburgh.
Having fuelled up at Penrith, we repeated the process at Glasgow then took the Erskine Bridge arriving at Helensburgh around 1500hrs. That evening we just had a few beers locally.
The next day we headed off in the blustery conditions for the relatively short leg to Oban. We went up by Faslane Naval Base and joined the A83 around Arrochar. We were now heading towards Inverary. The wind was building and at the highest point in the Glen it was horrendous. I had no control whatsoever with the wind taking me where it wished, it was truly scary until we got about two miles down the road and our subsequent arrival in Inverary provided for a welcome break and photo shoot.
From here it was a straight forward run into Oban arriving with hours to spare. We fuelled up and got some supplies before attending the Ferry Terminal for our 1800hrs sailing to Craignure, Mull. There was a degree of chaos as attempts to get the boats off the jetty in Craignure resulted in them being blown back alongside. However, our sailing left on time and around 50 minutes later we arrived on Mull and travelled approximately 4/5 miles to the rugby club site.
The only downside to this event was "no bikes on the field" and as such we had to carry all the gear about 300 yards. After tents up in the dark, the Rally itself was superb. I dislike live music and always take the view that I would prefer to be able to hear myself think and be able to hold a conversation but the band on the Friday night were "Heavy Load" from Glasgow and they were outstanding!!! The other memorable event was getting chatting with Brian Weekes from Bristol. Diamond of a guy.
We had a run around the top end of the Island. Just South of Calgary Bay we found a dead whale which was duly reported to The Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust on arrival in Tobermory. Fed and watered, we headed off back to the site and in fact, the solo singer on the Saturday evening was pretty good too.
Dave was not a well man and as such took the Fishnish and Corran Ferries and limped home alone. George, Kris and myself stayed over and got the boat back to Oban on Monday 17th. Later that day we had another sailing to Castlebay, Barra. From there it was Vatersay via the Causeway for the Rally at the Edge.
- Steve Giddens
Continued in 2013 as the Eagle Has Flown Rally.