Ealaghol -> Sights and Scenery -> The Spar Cave (1)

The Spar Cave is on the east coast of Strathaird in the village of Glasnakille. Sir Walter Scott visited the cave in 1814 and later alluded to it in his poem The Lord of The Isles:

...Who bathes her limbs in sunless well
Deep in Strath-aird's enchanted cell...

Unfortunately, later Victorian visitors blackened the ceilings with the soot from their flares and removed many stalactites as souvenirs, but the cave and its approaches remain a wonderful example of nature's beauty and grandeur.

N.B. The cave can only be accessed for a hour or so either side of low tide, so check the tide state and give yourself plenty of time either side of low water to to get in, explore and get back out!

The route to the cave involves walking across waterlogged ground, rock scrambling and the crossing of seaweed covered rocks, so ensure you are fit, suitably equiped and prepared.

The cave is not a show cave, so you need to take your own lighting.

The formations in the cave have taken centuries to form, please leave them as you find them for the benefit of future generations.

Approaching the first bay. © 1999 DW (11KB)

From a ruined stone barn a short distance south of the road junction in Glasnakille the path (often waterlogged) descends through bracken and trees to this narrow rock strewn approach inlet. From the floor of this inlet you will need to go around to the left.

If the approach inlet is flooded, you will have a very long wait before you might attempt to access the cave.

Looking into the intermediate canyon. © 1999 DW (11KB)

Between the approach inlet and the main Spar Cave inlet is a narrower intermediate inlet backed by a canyon several feet wide.

If you cannot cross this intermediate inlet with ease, you are still too early - and remember you also have to cross it on the way back!

Outer bay from entrance. © 1999 DW (11KB)

Once across the intermediate inlet and around the headland you can see into the main inlet bay, backed by a narrow rift and a much larger canyon with walls up to 30m (100 ft) high.

Unless the tide is very low you will probably need to traverse around on narrow rock ledges to reach the canyon, even with a very low spring tide you will need to cross seaweed covered rocks.

The sequence continues on Spar Cave (2)

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