August in Scotland ended with a two week gale stopping me in my tracks, but luckily #troonmarina looked after Good Dog and me very well. Surrounded by vast piles of freshly felled trees Troon port worked 24/7 but had some unexpected gems.
Johnnie Cowie is an ex ship’s Master and is now the Harbour Master for Troon, Deputy HM for Ayr and a pilot for a third harbour Silloth in Morecambe Bay. (I was forced to miss out Silloth due to bad weather – and Johnnie explained to me that entering Silloth harbour was so dangerous – even at slack water the rip tide can go in both directions at once!) .
As well as an active fishing fleet, a commercial quay, and a dry dock repair facility, Troon’s main import is trees. The red vessel in photo 7 is actually a giant landing craft which drives up onto remote beaches, collects freshly cut timber from around the coast of Argyll and Bute and transports it to Troon where it is turned into roofing trusses.
Have you ever wondered how sea salt is made? At the end of the quay was a white truck sucking up seawater. Chatting to the operator he explained that as Troon has no river, the seawater is very pure and has a slightly higher salt content than other harbours. The water is processed by circulating it through a large vertical construction (photo 8) which is packed with blackthorn branches. As the water drips down through the branches the wind slowly evaporates the water and concentrates the salt. When you next see Peacock Salt – this is how it is made!
Just yards from the fishing boats is a famous fish and chip shop called the #weehurrie , a favourite of Billy Connolly who had been there the previous day! Thank you to Johnnie and the staff of the marina for an interesting stay in your harbour – the whistling of the wind is still ringing in my ears!
About the Harbour Master Sailing Challenge: I am circumnavigating #GB in a #Nauticat attempting to visit every #harbour with a #harbourmaster #fundraising to #support @Seafarers_UK and their work in the #martime industry, supporting #seafarers and their #families. You can #sponsor my #challenge by visiting the link in my bio. Thank you for your support!