Up in the Clouds on Foinaven

I went for a two-day walk over Foinaven recently. I didn't have time for sketching and the midges were too bad to stay in one place for long, so I only have photographs and memories from the trip. The weather wasn't as good as I'd hoped for, so I was in cloud for much of the time. I'll definitely go back in better conditions sometime.

 The walk in along Strath Dionard.

Loch Dionard.

It soon got very boggy.

Midges!! I'm glad I remembered to take gloves, even though it's summer.

A close look at midges!

There were some good examples of the amazing geology of the area.

Getting up into the mountains now.

Deer. I told them to keep their heads down now that the shooting season has started!

Up on the ridge.

Lord Reay's Seat.

A mountain shelter on Cadha na Beucaich.

Still more climbing to do.

The cloud cleared for some views down into Coire na Lurgainn.

Heating soup on the summit.

Off the mountain and across the moors.

The Kyle of Durness.


  1. Thank "You" ... for your guided trip "up into the clouds" Keith!

    Breath-taking!That best describes the feelings... even from a monitor.A wonderful trek! Great photo references!

    Sometimes there is no need for painting equipment Keith. Just having not to paint... just to soak in the beauty around you... and to feel the kinship with the Earth is the elixir of renewal needed.

    I know that this head-clearing tactic works for "Me" and jump starts my enthusiasm to get back to the easel.Does for you too it would seem.

    "He leadeth me beside still waters... it restoreth my soul..."
    Somebody else felt the same way... ever so long ago.

    Thank "You" for sharing Keith!

    Good Painting!... and Happy (midgeless) Summer!HAHA!

  2. Thank you Keith for taking us on a journey with you, I had a look at Foinaven on wiki and it is quite rough hard going terrain to walk across and up towards the summit. I wish the weather could have been better for you yet you have brought us some very atmospheric photos to view. I wonder what paintings you will produce after such a journey.

  3. Wow, what an amazing landscape.

    Isn't Scotland beautiful.

    I've been told my some tourists that 'there is nothing there' but they must be very nearsighted.

    A Scotlandlover from the Netherlands

  4. "Sometimes there is no need for painting equipment Keith. Just having not to paint... just to soak in the beauty around you... and to feel the kinship with the Earth is the elixir of renewal needed."

    Yes you're right Bruce. When I go somewhere new, I think I tend to feel under pressure to paint and bring something back with me. Maybe sometimes all we need to bring back is the experience.

  5. I think the cloud may have helped from a painting point of view, Caroline. As you've seen, it is very rocky up there and a bit of soft cloud will balance the hardness.

  6. Hi Anne,

    I suppose you have to appreciate wildness to find beauty in the Highlands of Scotland.

  7. You're entirely right, Keith.

    I count myself lucky to be travelling to Scotland twice next year; to Harris and to the Orkneys. Enough wildness there!

    Unfortunately my trip to the isles of Skye and Eriskay were cancelled this year due to the volcanic ash problem.

  8. thank you for those wonderfull pics keith,what an amazing scenes,those midgets are legendary!

  9. Yes Rob they certainly are. I read that they wouldn't be able to survive the last winter, so numbers should be down this year. The midges don't seem to agree!

  10. Midges?!!! What the hell are midges?!!! I thought ticks and chiggers were bad but I have never had to wear gloves. Sheesh. Scotland may be a little "wilder" than Tennessee. Thanks for the tour. If I can ever sell enough paintings and save enough money I'll buy some gloves and come se ya'.

  11. Beautiful! I imagine what it is like to breathe in that vista and to physically embrace it with all your muscles and tendons to the top and down again. Wonderful. Absolutely spectacular Keith
    Thanks for sharing.

  12. Yes ticks are nasty as well, Kevin, but midges are something else. They are only about 1/16 inch long, but they swarm in black clouds and leave bites that itch like mad.

    I've added another photo of them so you can see them in their horrible detail. :D


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