Two last night one this morning after having had right middle finger up. Better than she was. Better last night and this morning than before, but still hardly moist. I really had a kiss this morning and my moisture did do a little at hers. Breakfast at 9 35/60.
Off from the very small but comfortable white-washed inn at Balloch, on the raft to the steam boat at 10 5/60. On board the Lady of the Lake Steamer at 10¼. An opposition steamer, the Euphrosyne, which started at the same time with us, belonging to a steam boat builder somewhere [near]. The people at the inn interested for the Lady of the Lake. Said we were to be off at 10. Waited on board 35 minutes & off at 10 50/60. Only one or 2 widely scattered little white houses at Balloch besides the inn, so small because not known at first whether it would answer. About 30 islands in the lake, all but one or 2 clustering at the south end. Very pretty wooded knolls. The pass arriving there very pretty. Inchmurrin largest & first. A little sort of summer house there where the Duke of Montrose goes to drink tea, & near his herdsman’s cottages, or rather park-keepers for here is the duke’s deer park. On the left (west) pass a handsome place of Mr Smollett’s, then Glen [Finin], the smaller Glen Finlas & at 12 Glen Luss, larger again, but like the other 2 glens bare & wildish looking. A little before coming to Glen Luss, on a little peninsula into the lake, Ross Dhu (pronounced roze dhoo), Sir James Colquhoun. But here our attention was too much taken up by our rival steamer coming in close contact with us meaning either to force us aground or pass us rudely, our men declaring that if she wished to pass there was deep water enough for us both.
A little beyond Glen Luss (right) pass Rowardennan inn, a little cottage whence one could be ferried over the lake. At 1¼ pass the same sort of little cottage (a door & 1 window on each, 1 storey high, thatched) at Inversnaid (the fort hid behind the hill), whence we should have been ferried over to Tarbet or picked up by the steam boat, had we been in time from the Trosachs & Loch Katrine, 5 miles, or from Aberfoyle 15 miles, had the moss been passable. Close to the little inn at Inversnaid, very pretty & considerable waterfall into the lake, coming down from the little Loch Arklet. At 1 25/60 pass Rob Roy’s cave close upon the lake (right). So much wind could not well land. Besides, in consequence of the wet weather the cave wet & dirty. Our steerman had seen 25 men stand in it but they quite filled it. I could scarce discern the entrance, so small. But saw the pointed mass of rock under which it passed. We had passed Ben Lomond between Rowardennan & Inversnaid (right) 3,262 feet (p.163 et seq. Scottish Tourist) above the level of the sea. Not so imposing as I expected yet finely wild. No wood on him. His summit quite clear. Lucky. The only day we could see him since Monday when the steamer began her trips. Rather too soon. Company did not begin to come in great numbers before the middle of this month. South end of the lake among the pretty copse wooded islands very pretty. North end narrower, more hemmed in with high rugged mountains & finer. Lake winds enough to vary the scene perpetually & is certainly a very fine lake, but the hills are too bare. Sad want of wood & near Tarbet cutting down some of the sticks there are. Pretty little island at or near the north end, wooded partly with young larches. Small ruin on it of a house anciently belonging to the McFarlane.
At 1¾ stopped off the bull stone on our left (a large [squarey] oblong mass of rock with some steps up to a door in it, said to be a pulpit within) to take up passengers. This stop about 1½ miles from the head of the lake. Went a little higher up & then at 1 55/60 veered about & off back again. At 2 55/60 a large party of us landed at Tarbet, a neat little white washed inn a little from the west side of the lake. Prettily situated. A little north of Ben Lomond. Two miles across the lake & then 5 to the top of Ben Lomond. Ladies walk it in 2½ hours & gents in 1½ hours. A party gone from here today but after all this wet weather the road very wet & bad. The inn so full came to a small kind of lodging house, very neat & clean, at a little distance from the inn, but near enough to have dinner etc brought from the house. Soon made ourselves comfortable. From about 4 to 6 5/60 wrote the above of today. Dinner at 6 5/60 to 7 5/60. Afterwards sat talking & dozing, the Edinburgh ale having made me heavy. A young married couple on board the steamer today, who arrived latish last night at Balloch. Tea at 8¾. Settled my accounts. Gloomy, cold, windy day with light flying showers while on the lake. Came to my room at 11 40/60.
Margin: Balloch along Loch Lomond 24 miles?
Return from the end of the loch to Tarbet 6 miles?
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