Walking On Mull
Mull has a variety of walks, ranging from gentle stroll along sandy beaches, to the more energetic climb to the summit of Ben More, Mull’s only “Munro” and our highest peak at over three thousand feet.
Parking off-road at the junction of Fionnphort and Pottie roads enables the walker to follow the Pottie road uphill. The road becomes an unmade path and emerges on the Knockvologan road east of Fidden. From here it is possible to complete the loop, returning via Fionnphort, or continue to Knockvologan to explore the Highland Renewal nature reserve, and perhaps look for otters and seals.
Camus Tuath is a former fishing station and granite quarry. The old quarry workers houses are now used as an adventure/outdoor centre by Iona Community during the summer. The rough and often boggy track requires stout footwear and leaves the A849 at the gate marked “Camus”. Also on this track, by crossing the open moorland on your left, there is a secluded sandy bay, better known as Market Bay. The Royal family used to picnic here with the Royal Yacht Britannia.
Ardalanish Bay and Uisken
By following the road sign to Uisken, just behind the village of Bunessan, drive for 3 miles to the end of the road, and from here you can enjoy a gentle stroll along the bay or climb the hill East to the cairn (remember to bring a stone). Also on the same road is Ardalanish Bay. Bby turning right and driving for ¼ mile there is a car park on your left and from here you can walk though the farm, being careful to shut gates behind you.
Taking the turning to Scoor, east of Bunessan, it is possible to drive the car as far as the ruined church and graveyard at Kilvickeon. Park here and walk up the track to Scoor House. From here follow the track and though the gate, climbing uphill to enter a field with a ‘fank’ (stone wall for holding sheep). Ignore the gate below the fank and follow the track, sometimes rather faint over the grass, to the top gate. Heading towards the edge of the ridge, turn left along ridge following a narrow track, aiming in the direction of the forest ride clearly visible across the valley. The track to Shiaba can be spotted below. Over 350 people lived here at the end of the eighteenth century and the remains of there houses and boundary walls that marked their crofts can still be seen.
This is a short geological walk from Bunessan: the leaf beds of Ardtun. From Bunessan take the road sign posted to Ardtun and follow this until you come to a fork, turn left, heading towards the end of this road will be a gate way on your right, just before the last two houses are reached. From here head towards Dunan Mor with a cairn on top, heading Northwards down to the fields above the shore. Sheep tracks take you along under the low basalt cliffs, with the sea surging into it and bringing you to a deep, narrow inlet. From here you need to head towards the top of the cliff, and cut across the headland north-eastwards towards Ardmeanach. After a short walk, you will reach an open gully between the cliffs well above sea level. Here, by the sides of this gully, are the fossilized leaf beds.
Carsaig Bay is reached by road, four miles from the Fionnphort to Craignure road at Pennygael. Park your car at the old pier. The bay, is overlooked by limestone cliffs, is a fascinating place to explore, with its abundant fossils. From here there are two extended coastal walks, one going south-west to Carsaig Arches at Malcolm’s Point, the other going East and North to Lochbuie. Each walk requires a whole day, but offers a chance to experience the uniquely Hebridean atmosphere of the south coast of Mull, with eagles, deer, wild goats & otters all to be seen, with breathtaking views to Colonsay and Jura.
Burg and Fossil Tree ( MacCulloch’s Tree)
This all-day walk starts from the National Trust for Scotland car park at the end of Tiroran on Loch Scridain. The track skirts the shore of the loch until it reaches the isolated cottage at Burg Farm, and the nature reserve Burg. Descending to the shore, the rough path leads round the headland of Ardmeanach to the Fossil Tree, discovered in 1819. The 40-foot high fossilized cross section of the tree is visible in the cliff face, beyond the second of two large waterfalls.
The highest mountain and only Munro on Mull is Ben More (966m) and is usually climbed from the North-West side, starting from sea level. Park off the road at Dhiseig on Loch na Keal, and follow the well-defined path beside the burn. On a clear day, the summit offers views extending as far as the Cuillins on Skye to the North, and Tiree, Coll and the Treshnish Isles to the west. An alternative but steeper ascent can be made from the south, starting from the head of Loch Scidain.
- Remember to prepare yourself.
- Check the weather forecast and turn back if necessary even on the best summer days. Wear sturdy footwear, as much of the land is peaty/boggy and some coastal walks are of rough terrain.
- Carry a rucksack with waterproof jacket and trousers, spare warm clothing, food, water, torch, whistle, compass and map.
- Gates across farm land, if found open, leave open. If you find gate closed, shut it after you again securely.
- Let someone know where you are going, your route and expected time of return.
- Be aware that there is no Mountain Rescue service on the Isle of Mull and mobile phone service in the area is limited to Vodafone and 02.