On the visit to the Monach Isles back in May we had a bonus lighthouse bag in the form of Haskeir lighthouse, which is located 13 kms west north west of North Uist. Although we knew we were visiting the island and that it was home to a lighthouse, we were both expecting a “flat-pack” affair. We were pleased, however, to discover that it was something more substantial. Not “Stevenson” substantial, but definitely worth visiting.
As we arrived at the island and prepared to get into the tender a helicopter flew overhead and landed on the island. We wondered if we were going to get any trouble from a potential owner or anything, but the door opened, a couple of people got out, took pictures, hopped back in again and off they went. The helicopter was operated by PDG and was blue and orange in colour. These are the helicopters currently contracted by the Northern Lighthouse Board to transport their engineers around to service the lighthouses.
We weren’t sure whether we would manage to land on the island, but the conditions were in our favour once again. The landing wasn’t too bad and there was a bit of a clamber up some rocks and along a couple of narrow ledges before we reached the relatively flatter ground. The island reminded me very much of Eilean Chathastail on which the Eigg lighthouse (a very similar structure to this one) sits.
Being careful not to disturb the birds we made our way up to the lighthouse. It’s what I have started referring to as a “halfway lighthouse”, a white, 9 metre, fibre glass structure with a white lantern. The lighthouse was constructed in 1997 and is one of only two buildings on the island, the other being an old bothy, which we didn’t see while we were there. As with those we’d visited the day before and that morning, it was a very peaceful place and definitely worth the effort of getting off of the boat.
The high point of the island was just next to the lighthouse, which is always pleasant and tends to keep everyone happy 🙂