January 24, 2021

The last 4 weeks

I was in America over Christmas, back in North Yorkshire now. I love this place. Here's a few images from the last 4 weeks as an aide-memoire to me.

The arctic conditions on the moors are balm for the soul:

We spent Christmas in New Hampshire. JM and I went to shoot a pier in Maine at dawn.

JM working with a film Hasselblad:

My shot of dawn:

Our beloved mini schnauzer, Trixie, died the day I came to England in July. We scattered her ashes by Dumont Rock in Rockleigh Wood which she loved to climb at the top of a hill in New Jersey:

Grace and I re-visited Bushwick in Brooklyn, NYC, to shoot street art:

I finally cleared out all the boxes of stuff I'd stored in London for years from the living room floor. Now it looks like a good spot for chess and whisky:

My barn owl neighbors are especially active. These shots from my study window:

I have permission to prowl around this farm and the next-door farm. This is an opportunistic shot of a stag with the moor behind:

The nearby North Sea is a visual contrast. I like the ghosts of the wind turbines in the mist behind the cormorant at Redcar Sands:

The recent high winds brought out kite surfers at Teesmouth:

Anyway the barn owls are thriving. This place is a nature reserve really, not a farm, as it hasn't been cultivated for 10 years and there's a beck with plenty of woods. There is lots of undergrowth in the fields which means rodents and therefore birds of prey. This from an upstairs window:

Newsflash - a neighbor says she's seen otters by our stream. That would be incredible. Andrew says there used to be kingfishers, but the run-off from upstream farms polluted the water and killed the fish. If there are really otters, well!

June 01, 2019

A Drive in Scotland with Hikes

1. Fly into Inverness from London. Birmingham Airport is also good to fly from - only 70 minutes by train from London, Euston.

 2. Drive to Ullapool on the west coast.

There's an ok Tesco's in Ullapool.

A good b and b is Suilven 3 miles north of Ullapool on a single track road to Rhue - bedrooms ok, lounge very good, breakfast very good, short stroll to Rhue lighthouse.

Rhue lighthouse + Ullapool-Stornoway ferry, Scotland

3. Climb Stac Pollaidh from the car park. Good path, do it as a circle up and round the back of the mountain, about 2 and a half hours. This is a must, despite the other hikers.

Stac Pollaidh and Suilven
Grace on the Stac Pollaidh path, Cul Mor behind
Grace on Stac Pollaidh
Grace on Stac Pollaidh

4. Visit Knockan Crag, a lovely easy walk round a world famous geo-site.

Grace at Knockan Crag

5. Climb Quinag from the A894 car park marked. "Quinag is a magnificent and complex mountain with three summits attaining Corbett status. The ascent of all three is one of the finest hillwalks in Scotland, with fine peaks, dramatic ridges and stunning views. If the full walk is too much, the ascent of the first peak (with a return the same way) is a short and fairly straightforward hillwalk with rewards out of all proportion to the effort involved."

Spidean Coinich, Quinag, Scotland

6. Take the car ferry from Ullapool to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis.

Stornoway ferry approaching Ullapool

Rhue lighthouse from the Stornoway ferry

On the ferry to Lewis

7. Drive south from Stornoway to Harris, past Tarbert to circle round the southern peninsula. 8. Vist the cafe and gallery at Geocrab on the way. 9. Visit the church at Rodel.

In St Clement's Church, Rodel, southern tip of Isle of Harris

10. Visit Luskentyre sands.

Luskentyre beach, Isle of Harris

11. Take the car ferry from Tarbert to Uig on the Isle of Skye.

The Skye ferry at Tarbert, Isle of Harris

Leaving Harris on the ferry to Skye 12. From Uig on Skye it's 20 minutes drive to the Quiraing car park. This is a famous landscape. Take the path from the car park as far as you feel like it and maybe come back over the high plateau. Strangely I don't have any good pictures of my own.

13. Do the picturesque drive south to Elgol. Skye can be heavily visited, so best to book a b and b in advance preferably at Elgol.  On the way you get fine views of Blaven.

14. Walk up the coast north from Elgol to Camasunary and back. I once slept in the bothy there after climbing Blaven.

15. Drive back to Broadford and on across the bridge to Kyle of Lochalsh on the mainland.

16. If you still have time before heading back to Inverness airport, then the next stretch has many points of interest such as the Applecross peninsula, Mellon Udrigle, Poolewe WW2 naval base, the mountains of Torridon and much else. If you want to do one of the finest ridge walks in Britain, then climb An Teallach (pronounced 'An Shaylack').

The Great Wilderness from An Teallach

An Teallach ridge

17. Dont miss the very short walk to Corrieshallock Gorge.

18. You can fill up the rental car at Tescos on the big roundabout a few miles before Inverness airport.

March 24, 2018

I'm back

2004-2010 I was here at Blogger.

2010-2016 I used Zenfolio.

2018-  Here I am back at Blogger. It's free, it persists, it's not Wordpress with all those tiresome updates, the Simple theme can be stripped of most of its clutter.

December 14, 2016

December 28, 2010

What Just Happened ?

This interview is from March 2009 but is still the best account of What Just Happened that I know and an intellectual delight: