Touring: West Coast Scotland - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-27-2013, 12:46 PM Thread Starter
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Vehicle: 2009 C220cdi sport estate with no options
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Touring: West Coast Scotland

Guys, heres another blog I did on another MB forum re travel in Scotland.

Yesterday AM I went on my tour. My reasoning was I wanted to get a nice morning shot at Loch Etive, which is a good 2hr drive away. I was up at 530am and on the road for 6am.

I decided I'd also try light painting my car, I have an emergency torch in the car. I used to carry it in the shed, and have cause to use it as it broke down at night. This time, its used for preferable things like doing stupid stuff like this

_DSC0923 by, on Flickr

Other good news regarding light is my Osram Nightbreaker headlights are a big improvement over the standard bulbs that were in there before. Both DM and corned who were passangers in the car the day I got it commented that the lights weren't the best. They aren't still as good as the Xenons in the shed, but they are now more than ok.

As you can see, although its still very early morning, the light was getting brighter, past Rannoch Moor summit I took the turn road for Glen Etive. Loch Etive lies at the bottom of this road.

_DSC0925 by, on Flickr

We would return to Buchaille Etive Mor later for some imaging. The road down Glen Etive as mentioned in previous threads needs treated with respect, water runs down from the hills above and has a nasty habit of freezing and forming black ice. Something even winter tyres will not save you from. The area is a magnet for deer/stags and they'd make a real mess of your car, even as one as robust as a Mercedes

Would I say the drive was worth it

DSC_0477 by, on Flickr

Hell yes, but the results IMHO weren't as good as I was hoping. The sun just wasn't high enough to illuminate the banks on the LHS. However, its a very still Loch and with the view out, a marvellous place to be. A few brave souls were camping too. This is hillwalker country and a lot camped here as could be seen by the tents at the side of the road. Me. Too cold for camping. I love camping, but not at the start of February.

Glencoe and Rannoch Moor are one of my favourite places. I've never once got an image of Buchaille Etive Mor that I am happy with, until now.

DSC_0485 by, on Flickr

There's a small car park just before a small bridge about 500m from the A82 junction. Over that there's a trodden path, go this, set up base and get a really nice view and scene of the hill. Its one of Scotlands most iconic views, and IMHO snapping it from the roadside like I've done in the past doesn't do it justice. I ran into another camera man, he'd come up from N.Yorks to photograph the area. The subject of cars came up, and he reckoned an MB would be a cracking upgrade from his focus, but they are dear. Probably about right. The car had been perfect so far....

One of my other favourite places to go is Loch Leven to photograph. The epic road round the Loch helps too. Even on a damp road surface and on those awful winter tyres, the car took the bends really well and went along it as least as quickly as my E sport did on summer tyres on dry roads. It's a real driving road and one of my faves. Usually quiet too. The C estate is very well damped, it keeps its poise and doesn't chin into the ground like the E would do and keeps remarkably flat through the bends and 3rd gear having all the speed range you need, means you can just steer and brake and you are always in the right gear for the road.

About 2mi out of Kinclochleven there is a layby to park in and a beach just below with easy access to a photogenic view. Sadly, the light wasn't to be so snapped this

_DSC0929 by, on Flickr

Retrieved my texts (co-incidentally from a forum member) and revealed my plans for the day. I called my mate up to see whether they wanted to go out for Lunch. I fancied a big eating fest in the Roo's Leap in Aviemore that does brilliant ribs, the monster bob burger and onion flowers....

Sadly he was hungover so the tour continued...

To be honest I was quite dishearted, the spot I really wanted to use for my winter Loch Leven images was not yielding results, and I wasn't getting to pig out with my mate. I thought, ucht, will drive up to Ft William, get fuel and nasty food...

And then, as I was driving along this unfolded in my mirror. Yes, light, and good light (despite it being midday). Parked the car up into the grass at the side of the road and fired off a few frames..

This is the pap of Glencoe

DSC_0504 by, on Flickr

And this is the view up Loch Leven to where it meets Loch Linnhe

DSC_0513 by, on Flickr

I'd also remembered a member on here, who shall remain nameless, requested me to take an image for them of Loch Linnhe for their own memories. I had planned on doing this later on in the year under more spring like conditions, however, as I was in the area and the weather perked up I decided on delaying my lunch by 30mins and trying to get them an image they'd be happy with. If you're not happy, PM me, and I will go again and get another.

This image is taken past Onich by about 3-5miles and there is a big layby. Clamper down the rocks, take care, I nearly met my maker doing this

DSC_0520 by, on Flickr

Here's a snap of the layby with the car, you'll recognise it if you have passed by before.

_DSC0940 by, on Flickr

Again, I am glad to do this as I've never actually got a decent set of Loch Linnhe, despite driving past it so many times over the years. The twisty section of the 82 is a fun one along this loch. When you are driving it, see if you can hold 60 through all the turns past the Coran Ferry bit to Ft William....

After getting to Ft William, I bought £30 of diesel that went a long way. Went to the pub attached to the newly built Premier Inn. I hate chain food, but the staff were so good to me when I fell over on last years forum tour with ice etc to numb the pain in my arm, I feel oblidged to go in....

On my way back, I went via the Appin route. I've spied some new photographic sights to visit next time, and at the end I got another image I've been after.

Kilchurn castle on Loch Awe bathed in evening light

DSC_0535 by, on Flickr

I then went over the Duke of Argylls way back to Inverrary and along the way back

_DSC0946 by, on Flickr

Way better MPG than the shed would give, this is on winter fuel, and kickdown etc was used, C class estate. I remain your biggest fan

Current Merc: 2009 C220cdi sport estate
Prev Merc: 2005 E320cdi sport

Last edited by st4; 03-27-2013 at 12:49 PM.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-27-2013, 01:24 PM
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Enjoyed the pics and commentary. Thanks for sharing.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-27-2013, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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No bother, the least I can do for my Atlantic cousins is share whats on the other side of the pond

Current Merc: 2009 C220cdi sport estate
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