The Trip-Finder, January 1999
Walking the Isle of Harris
The Route: A weeklong ramble across a windswept island off Scotland's west coast. From the sprawling old Harris Hotel, you'll follow switchbacks that rise sharply from the white shell-sand beaches up to the tops of rubbly cliffs.
When to go: May through August
Travel advisory: For longer days and a relative scarcity of midges, pick a May or June trip. But aim for August to catch the wildflowers that grow in profusion in the isle's unique soil — windblown coral sand called machair.
- Watching flocks of gannets plunge into the sea from atop the cliffs at Husival Beag.
- Getting fogged in and forced to retreat before reaching the summit of 2,622-foot Clisham, the highest point on the island.