Getting Here

Gometra, Ulva Ferry, Isle of Mull, PA73 6NA.

 

Getting to Gometra is worth it - please don’t be deterred by the difficulty of the journey.

 

However it is also arduous and/or expensive, and we will happily send photographs, information or samples to save you a trip if this helps.   Sadly we can’t subsidise the costs of a trip.  Please confirm all times with websites & numbers given, and and if you need our input please confirm your visit with us in good time by text to 07525751171.  We are a small island community, usually of 2 to 4  households, committed to a low impact lifestyle and we do not have electricity or (with one exception) telephones in our homes, or access to a doctor, teacher, shops, post-offices etc.  We usually have cold and often have hot running water.  Please bring a sleeping bag, food and a torch if you wish to stay overnight.  Teacher's Bothy and Jane Ann's Bothy can both be booked through AirBnb.  Disabled visitors may have additional difficulties accessing the island and should not hesitate to text or email for information.  Thank you!  Gometra.

 

  1. ScotRail train from Glasgow Queen St to Oban five times a day.
  2. In Oban you can stay at Youth Hostel or Backpacker’s - but booking is essential in summer because Oban gets full.
  3. CalMac ferry from Oban to Craignure on the Isle of Mull several times a day, less in winter, booking essential for motors.  Or Calmac ferry from Lochaline to Fishnish on Mull several times a day.
  4. Bowman's bus 495 get off at Salen (bus marked Tobermory at the front), several times a day, often leaves shortly after ferry docks so don't dawdle.
  5. Then Ulva Ferry Community Bus 07775531301 info@ufcb.org.uk (in summer sometimes runs twice a day on Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday by request only if requested before 4pm preceding day.  Please double check their website for both summer and winter timetables).
  6. Or a 10 mile walk/hitch to Ulva Ferry on the Isle of Mull.
  7. Or drive straight to Ulva Ferry in your own motor.
  8. Or Mull Self Drive Car Hire
  9. Or book a taxi (well in advance).
  10. Then Ulva Ferry foot passenger and bicycle ferry (no cars) to the Isle of Ulva (usually Monday-Friday 9-5 April to October, Sunday-Friday 9-5 July and August.  Closed in winter.)
  11. Then a 7 or 8 mile walk-in from Ulva to Gometra.  This takes me 85 minutes running or 120 minutes fast walking, but will take longer walking slowly or with a heavy pack.  The track (sign-posted 'Am Bru' leads up past the Boat House Tea Room, turns 2nd left and then 2nd right (at a Dutch Barn), climbs up past the Ulva Reservoir, then is the main beaten track all the way to Gometra.  It is an unfrequented hill track in poor condition and should not be attempted by inexperienced walkers or after dark.  You will need OS Explorer Sheet 374 Isle of Mull North & Tobermory and appropriate compass, equipment, footwear and foul weather gear.  Vodafone and foreign mobiles usually work near Ulva's East end and Gometra's Southern and Western extremities.  It is advisable to let someone know your route and ETA and to arrange that you will contact them to say you have arrived safely.  It is not possible to cross the causeway at rough spring tides or when the bridge is lifted (both infrequent during summer).
  12. Jane Ann's Bothy (NM 37006 40447) is the highest of the three cottages you see beside the track about 1 mile after you have reached Gometra.  Teacher's Bothy is the most right hand (Eastern) of the four cottages you see in a row about 2 miles after you have reached Gometra (NM 35785 40701).
  13. Vodafone coverage map.  Unfortunately other networks don't seem to work, but foreign mobiles may use Vodafone's masts.
  14. We ask visitors to make their own arrangements for parking at Ulva Ferry.

 

Health and Safety Notes - please see our risk note too.

 

The North Harbour pier and its track is in poor condition and we are not allowed to recommend their use.  We require indemnity by employers and individuals requesting permission to use it.  As an independent contractors can sometimes transport luggage and equipment to the island.

 

Sadly we cannot assume liability for individuals and employers with respect to the journey to Gometra or your activities whilst here.  If you wish us to do so you must not make the journey.   Please contact us instead so we can figure out an alternative solution.  You or your your employer must carry out your own risk assessment if you come.  This is because it is a naturally dangerous environment exacerbated by the lack of access to a doctor, and there are strict health and safety requirements for us to abide by.

 

Contacting us on Gometra (when offshore please contact by text or email).

 

Email to rocsandford@mac.com : best method : weather permitting we attempt to receive email by satellite downlink at very least once a week, usually once a day or more.

 

Text to 07525751171 : weather permitting, we usually receive these within 24 hours from a point on the SW corner of Gometra which has intermittent and weather-dependent mobile reception for Vodafone handsets, though due to borderline reception on the island and peculiarities of Vodafone's text storage system, it can be a matter of days before texts get through, if at all.

 

Voicemail is difficult to retrieve from Gometra and shared landline in farm office is intermittent and poor quality, so we no longer use voicemail.

 

Post : Weather permitting, there is usually a weekly incoming postal service.  Please allow another week before an outgoing journey can take a reply.  This means turn-around time for post is usually around 14-21 days between posting a letter and receiving a reply, plus any normal delay in processing our end.

 

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All text and Images © Roc Sandford, Gometra, 2015 unless otherwise stated.  Please let us know of any corrections or suggestions.  To contact us click here.