June 23, 2024

The Machair and Eriskay

Finally a bit of sun today as we made our way from South Uist to the Isle of Eriskay in the Outer Hebrides.  The long machair lined beach was truly spectacular stretching a least a mile along the Atlantic Ocean. Machair is a Gaelic word meaning fertile, low-lying grassy plain, ‘machair’ refers to a unique habitat that is one of the rarest in Europe; only occurring on the exposed west-facing shores of Scotland and Ireland. There are signs along the machair asking people to stay off and to protect it.  This location was one of the most spectacular examples of this natural treasure and proved to be a great place to meditate on one’s life and the state of the world.

We crossed a stone jetty-like bridge onto Eriskay and by the time we reached this magical island the sun was out.  A more beautiful place you cannot imagine with the white beaches lined with imposing rocks and undulating hills covered in yellow wildflowers. The blue green color of the water reminds you of the Caribbean but here there is the contrast of the rocks and hills instead of palm trees. Eriskay is truly a captivating corner of the Outer Hebrides.  We came across a couple of Eriskay ponies, an ancient and rare breed, one of them perching on a mound along the fence.  They seem to know what you are thinking and their eyes are a true window to their souls.