Connel Bridge

The good lady and I took a short trip over to the west coast early in August. We travelled via the A 84 through Callander and past Loch Lubnaig up to the A 85.

Suddenly, on reaching Crianlarich, we had entered Gaeldom. The green background A-road signs displayed the English names of destinations in the usual white but in yellow there was in addition the Gaelic.* Glaschu and An t-Òban, for example for Glasgow and Oban. Fort William was easy to decipher being An Gearasdan – the garrison – how literal; as was stèisean for station.

Now, it’s years since I’ve been that far over but I don’t remember any Gaelic* road signs in Argyll and Bute back then. Up north, round Inverness and the like, yes; but not over in the west. Or had I just forgotten?

Anyway we passed through Connel. When I were a lad I’m sure it was called Connel Ferry. (Or was that just the railway station?) There’s no ferry now, of course. But there is a striking modern bridge. The photo is a stitch to get it all in.

Loch Etive, a sea loch, was running into the Firth of Lorne like a river tumbling down a slope.

The water was roiling and churning under the bridge quite fiercely.Though the water wasn’t very deep I wouldn’t have liked to be a ferrymaster dealing with that lot.

*This should, of course, be Gàidhlig.

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