Looking across Portree harbour at the start of our walk
Looking across Portree harbour at the start of our walk

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Route No. 270 - Thursday 16 October 2008
Portree, Bile pasture circuit - 4 km
Isle of Skye, Scotland . . .

Ordnance Survey route map on the Landranger series map base

Map: Ordnance Survey Explorer 410 Skye - Portree & Bracadale


My wife and I are having a week in a holiday cottage in Portree on the Isle of Skye in Scotland. The big Skye mountains are way beyond my abilities now, but we are finding some short walks with magnificent scenery for very little effort, so I'm adding some notes of our little strolls to my walking diary. The weather for the whole week was very mixed with intense dark squally showers and periods of sunshine and bright blue sky. This mix gave us some wonderful lighting effects with rainbows, bright sunshine on the autumn vegetation with a black cloud backdrop and sunlight streaming through the clouds to light up patches of the sea. It was a very enjoyable week.

Looking south across the bay in the morning sunlight
Looking south across the bay in the morning sunlight

Here the main road turns inland heading north and there is a minor road forking right which continues around the bay. We followed this road around the bay for about 400m to a small car park at map ref. NG489438.

This morning we had a short walk from Portree itself. From our holiday cottage we walked down to the harbour. We followed the main road (A855) around the bay to map ref. NG485437.

Path from the car park next to the shore
Path from the car park next to the shore

Looking across the bay to Portree harbour
Looking across the bay to Portree harbour

View point looking across the bay to Portree
View point looking across the bay to Portree

Apparently seals sometimes haul out along this stretch of the shore but we did not see any of them.

Here the road ends and we continued on a track around the bay next to the rocky shore.

Footpath next to the shore
Footpath next to the shore

Footpath next to the shore
Footpath next to the shore

As we rounded the headland at map ref. NG493435 we could see a large vessel ahead of us which turned out to be moored alongside a salmon farm in the sea between Skye and the island of Raasay.

The weather was the usual mix of showers and bright sunshine which gave us some lovely effects looking across the bay to the harbour in Portree.

Our first sight of the salmon farm between Skye and Raasay
Our first sight of the salmon farm between Skye and Raasay

Heading northeast on the coastal path to Bile pasture
Heading northeast on the coastal path to Bile pasture (the flatish green area ahead of us)

Our little path took us along the shoreline to map ref. NG497440 where we crossed a little stream and passed through a pedestrian gate into some pasture land rising up from the rocky shore. This area is called Bile Pasture. We crossed the pasture to a stile over the fence in the northern corner at map ref. NG500445.

A boggy area on the coastal path
A boggy area on the coastal path

Vessel moored at the salmon farm
Vessel moored at the salmon farm

Vessel moored at the salmon farm
Vessel moored at the salmon farm

Looking southeast from the coastal path to Raasay
Looking southeast from the coastal path to Raasay
Climbing up from Bile pasture to Torvaig
Climbing up from Bile pasture to Torvaig

Heading down the hillside from Torvaig
Heading down the hillside from Torvaig

We continued down through the woods to the minor road above the shoreline at map ref. NG487438. At the road we retraced our steps to Portree harbour where we booked a boat trip to see the white tailed sea eagles in the afternoon. It's turning out to be a very pleasant break on this lovely island.

Here we doubled back on a wide track climbing up the hillside to the hamlet of Torvaig at map ref. NG495445. We continued past the houses and down a track to two large agricultural sheds at map ref. NG492444. The track led us between these sheds and from there we followed a path down the hillside to some woodland on the edge of Portree.

Path though the woods on the edge of Portree
Path though the woods on the edge of Portree

Back at Portree harbour to book our boat trip for this afternoon
Back at Portree harbour to book our boat trip for this afternoon