One morning, we played a round of golf at Royal Dornoch, a seaside course held to be one of the top 10 in the world. According to Golf magazine, no fewer than three of its 18 holes are in the world’s top 500. On a technical level, Royal Dornoch is an excellent links course, with springy grass and beautiful views. In England, this would make playing it a rare privilege. In Scotland, however, golf is a sport for the masses, and outsiders are welcome to play for the price of a surprisingly reasonable green fee.
After dinner came log fires, more drams of the 18-year-old, and a very deep sofa; it was not unlike staying at a country house in which the proprietor still employs reliable servants. First-night memories get a little hazy at this point. But I do recall eating all our meals with other guests in a “dinner party” style, from a menu sourced largely from the hotel’s walled kitchen garden and local fish markets. Since we are both “hackers” who play only occasionally, our caddy, Greg, was charged with making sure we didn’t embarrass ourselves.
He tried tinkering with our grips and deconstructing our swings. It was a qualified success: moments of golfing excellence, marred by regular visits to streams, long grass and prickly gorse bushes. That afternoon, it was off to the Conon, one of the area’s top salmon rivers, for a few hours’ fly-fishing. Iain, our ghillie (Scottish for guide), taught us the art of the Spey-cast, and provided a fine line in local chat. View Detail: Conveyancing Perth | 2WV LAND
On his first effort, dad landed a fat trout; again, this was enough to secure father-son bragging-rights. By the end, we were Spey-casting like old pros, while bobbing down the river in a small rowing boat being steered by Iain. Though the salmon failed to oblige, it was an idyllic scene, reminiscent – or so we decided – of Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K Jerome. Salmon fishing is not the only area in which Ross-shire excels in sporting activity.