Saturday, 29 June 2013

Lunna Ness and The Stanes of Stofast

I was out around Lunna Ness the other day for work. It was a fine day if not a bit over cast and my hopes of seeing otters were dashed, but I did see a number of common seals, great and arctic skuas, wheatears, plovers and others.

Here's the  view at the end of Lunna Ness looking across to Luna Holm...


The high point was the Ward of Outrabister at the lofty height of 90m. Here's the view looking north-east from the top...


And looking south with the distinctive outline of Noss...



Looking over Fugla Water towards the Stanes of Stofast...





While I sat for a breather I set the camera to take this short time-lapse. A wonderful place...



Friday, 28 June 2013

Simmer Dim at Da Grind O Da Navir

A spontaneous decision and a wonderful summers evening had me throwing my camping and camera gear int he car and rushing up to Eshaness to take some photos of the sunset from Da Grind O D a Navir. 

As you can see it was gorgeous up there (about 9pm) and not even any midgies despite the lack of wind...


I hadn't realised how far north it would be when the sun actually set so when I arrived at around 8.30pm the sun was still high in the sky and already north of the Grind.



While there I realised that I should actually also be able to see the sun rise from the sea here, about 3.30am, but unfortunately by that time there was too much cloud and a heavy mist in the air. Here's the view  over the pool behind my camp at about 11.30pm. I could read all night if I wanted, but I tried to get some sleep.


While the sunset and I brewed up and admired the view and the birds I set the camera running to make a time-lapse video. If you can watch it in HD and fullscreen. I was a fantastic night...

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Fitful Head

I was lucky enough to be up on Fitful Head on a day that it was not shrouded in cloud. A 9.5km circular walk from Quendale Mill via the access road to the radar station on the top and then back via Garths Ness.

Here's a view of The Nev from the road and one of the few places you can get to the bottom of the cliffs if you're feeling fit and adventurous...


And looking north down the access road and along the Clift Hills...


The walk along the escarpment from the radar station to Siggar Ness is pretty spectacular...


Siggar Ness...


The walking is pretty uneven through tussocky grass and criss crossed sheep gaets and it's made no easier by the beautifully distracting views. Here's view from The Noup over towards Sumburgh and Scat Ness...


Looking back along The Noup, next stop America...


From the top of The Noup there's a great view  of The Bay of Quendale with Scat Ness and Sumburgh beyond laid out below you. It's a very steep decent through...


Soon enough I was back at the car, gagging for a drink and a little worse for wear with that strange orange ball in the sky. Great walk though!


Wednesday, 26 June 2013

What a sunset...


I was just thinking of going to bed last night when I thought I'd better go out on such a fine night to see what the sunset was like and try a time-lapse video now that I've got an intervalometer. As you can see it was a lovely evening, pretty enough to distract me from the biting midgies.

And here's a quick time-lapse of the sunset... (play in HD if you can)


It's been another fine day today so I might get out again later to another location and see if it can be even more impressive...

Friday, 21 June 2013

Broch of Burra Ness, Yell

I was out today up on Yell heading out along a path past the Haa of Sandwick and out to The Broch of Burra Ness. I'd seen the broch from the Fetlar ferry before but not been out there. It wasn't much of a day to be out and about and certainly nothing resembling mid summer!

Here's the beach at Sand Wick with the Haa on the right...


The Sand Wick Haa...


The path takes you across a short section of cliffs that was rich in bird life with fulmars coasting along the cliffs...


And nesting in grassy hollows...


There were eiders and chicks out on the sea...


Turnstones on the shores...


And the ever present and annoying piping oystercatchers whizzing about along with terns, black backed gulls, great skuas and even a pair of arctic skuas.


Wheat ears made there chittering sound and event the sky larks were up there somewhere.


Other than the arctic skuas the best sight was the mix of shag and a cormorants on some of the stacks off the cliff...



This cormorant was all on his own on this impressive needle...


 And he was very bonny...
 

 


After the cliffs there is another lovely stretch of sand that was home to a number of arctic terns before the Broch of Burra Ness that you can see at the end of the promontory on the left...


The broch was pretty impressive with earth works in the area clear as well as the inner and outer wall...



It's a lovely area a round the broch with great views and across the way on Fetlar are the remains of Sna Broch with Brough Lodge also visible. There's a couple of stiles needed but other than that it's a lovely walk along the coast.

Looking out the window the grey overcast clouds of the day seem to be lifting so I might get out for some simmer dim sunset photos later... 

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Otter on Hillswick Ness...

Out at Hillswick Ness today I noticed an otter just leaving some rocks and going out along the coast so I quickly froze and watched it...


It headed back into the rocks further along the beach and after a while of watching to see if it was going back out I slowly and carefully headed out to the rocky spur where it seemed to have landed...


Soon I noticed the otter in a delve between the rocks grooming itself and rolling about...







I was very close to it, may be 10m away keeping totally still, it kept looking up, around and towards me and then carrying on...


Eventually I realised it was my camera shutter that was bothering it and it started playing a bit of peek-a-boo behind the rocks looking for the cause of the noise. Obviously when it popped up I took photos and then it hid again briefly. It was quite amusing and soon it ignored my camera noise and certainly didn't seem to notice me...

 

 A short while later it had obviously had enough grooming and slithered off back to the sea. What a great experience that was!

There were plenty of other sights with a mix of birds and the banks were a canvas of orchids, squill, thrift, lousewort and other plants, but they weren't going to top my otter sighting.

Here's a close up of one of the orchids; I think a Heath Spotted Orchid...


And a spotted orchid with a lousewort...


A close up of a sea campion. I beautiful flower and I love the veining in it...


And red campion...