Scottish Tour Guide's Blog

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Browsing Posts published in May, 2010



This evening, my post focuses on Rannoch Moor a wild, desolate and mainly uninhabited stretch of terrain on the West of Scotland close to Glencoe and the West Highland Way.

The journey I took from Crianlarich to Fort William provides a good cross section of  the landforms of the south western Grampians. Deep but wide valleys surrounded by smooth hill slopes rising to summit ridges about 3000 feet. North of Loch Tulla on the A82 the landforms suddenly change, from deep, wide valleys and smooth hills to the bleak  plateau of Rannoch Moor which lies at an altitude of about 1200 feet.

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This evening, I am posting information and a video clip following my recent visit to Speyside Cooperage which is both a commercial operation and a visitor attraction.

This business has been in the same (Taylor) family for three generations. Location is heart of the Speyside whisky region. Here the cooperage provides oak casks (mainly from American oak) in which matures some of Scotland’s finest single malts.The business also repairs existing casks.

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Today, was the final day of our private whisky tour .

We started the day at our Guest House, An Cala, at Grantown on Spey. At breakfast we had window seat where we were able to watch a diversity of wildlife on the front lawn including mallard ducks, crows, wagtail, black headed gull, pheasant and a rare red squirrel. Its not surprising this part of the world attracts lots of ornithologists which are are split into two categories, ‘birdies’ and ‘twitchers’, with the latter being the most fanatical.

After a hearty breakfast we departed our excellent hosts, Keith and Val Dickinson and drove south for about 90 minutes to our first stop at Edradour Distillery. This is Scotland’s smallest distillery and  is privately owned by Andrew Symington’s Signatory Vintage group which specialises in rare and unusual whiskies. The Edradour malt is a very exclusive and found in specialist whisky shops in major world markets, including Canada and USA.  We joined one of the regular distillery tours led by a ‘character’ tour guide which added a bit of fun to the event. After the tour we were fortunate to have a private chat with the distillery owner, Andrew Symington, who kindly provided more background on the distillery, his plans for expansion and latest developments in the industry. This was a great experience and learning opportunity. For more narrative and images please  click on the ‘continue reading’  button below.

On tour at Edradour

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