Drove Road to Grass Point
Start location: A849 at Lochdon Church, Mull (NM 726 329)
End location: Pier at Grass Point, Mull (NM 747 309)
Geographical area: Argyll and Bute
Path Type: Drove Road
Path distance: 3.25km
Accessibility info: Suitable for pedestrians
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Follows road to NM 732 315, then leaves road, cuts across base of headland at Aird a' Crotha, along south shore of Loch Don to a small burn, then goes east to join road just short of Grass Point.
OS Landranger 49 (Oban & East Mull)
Cattle from all over Mull and further afield were ferried from Grass Point across to Kerrera and thence over the sound to the mainland. The crossing was in use from before 1620 primarily for the ferrying of cattle to mainland markets, and became the main ferry route to and from Mull until the second half of the nineteenth century. The Auchnacraig quay and inn buildings can still be seen at Grass Point.
The ferry between Auchnacraig and Barnabuck on Kerrera continued until 1867, by which time traffic had dwindled due to the competition from the growing steamboat connections with Oban. The ferry had carried the mail thrice weekly, but the Postal Authority did not trust the steamboats enough, and so the mail continued to be taken by sailing boat to and from Auchnacraig (Grass Point), but directly to Oban until 1882 when the ferry ceased. This was on the introduction of a daily steamer service between Tobermory, the Sound of Mull and Oban where it connected with the new railway to the south.
[- with thanks to the Mull Museum, Tobermory]
This route is marked on the OS 6" map (surveyed 1871-8), and also on 1920s Bartholomew mapping.
Auchnacraig Bridge (NM 726 328) was probably built about 1790, when the road from Grass Point to Aros was constructed at the instigation of the 5th Duke of Argyll.