Saturday, 13 February 2021

Ice cold on Mull

This last week or so has been very cold.  No snow to speak of, but bright dry cold days.  These 2 pictures are of Loch Cuin from the air.  It is always particularly beautiful with a thin layer of ice rising and falling with the tides. 

Snowy mountains on the Isle of Rum. 

The view from Reudle. 

Crackaig in the morning sun. 

The first Primrose of 2021.  Tucked away beside the burn protected by the willow growing around it.  Near Crackaig. 

Rum from near Larach Mhor on the way to Crackaig. 

The view from Toechtamhor to Rum, late afternoon. 

Loch Cuin again. 

There was even ice on Calgary Beach. 


Tuesday, 9 February 2021

Extreme beach cleaning

Over the last 18 months Farmer has been picking up marine plastic/rubbish along the coast below Crackaig back to the Whisky Cave.  He started during lambing in 2019, whilst waiting for a ewe to lamb, and decided to keep doing it.   By the end of last summer he had filled two tonne dumpy bags. This at least stopped it all from blowing around.  The only problem though was how to get it home.  That bit of coast is not accessible by quad bike, and being well over a mile to the nearest point where you can get a quad bike it was not going to be possible to carry it.  

The coastline is too rocky for it to be safe for a boat to come in and get it, so the only other option was to get a helicopter to do it, but goodness knows what that would cost.   So what with everything else going on, we just left it.  In the autumn we went down so that Farmer could replace one of the bags as he was worried about it being to photodegrade in the sun.  

Just before Christmas our prayers were answered when we heard that Skyhook Helicopters (part of island based TSL Construction) were going to be lifting huge quantities of fencing material into place on the Isle of Ulva, and so we contacted them and explained our problem.  They very kindly agreed to move the bags for us when they were doing the Ulva job.

Last weekend we got an email saying they were on their way! Delayed by the weather on Friday, it was nice and calm on Saturday.  

Farmer and I both felt quite emotional seeing the bags being lifted up and taken to the roadside over the hill.  

We are so grateful to Skyhook Helicopters for their kindness in helping us.    For the moment that bit of shoreline is clean, hopefully it will stay that way...


Saturday, 23 January 2021

Feeding sheep in all weathers

We don't usually get a lot of snow.  In fact this is a lot for us.  The tracks are white and there is a light icing sugar dusting on the hills and fields. 

This morning it was very, very cold, and Farmer was glad of the new insulated sleeves on the handle bars of the quad which keep his hands a bit warmer than Harbro feed bags. 


Wednesday, 20 January 2021

In the air

January has been a mostly pleasant month, with some exceptional calm and cold days.   The island is still in Level 3 whilst the mainland is in Level 4, effectively full lockdown.   Sadly all our mainland guests have had to cancel, but we are allowed island guests and it has been lovely hosting a few locals! 

I have been able to get the drone up in the air a few times. 

Feeding the sheep on the Point

A trip down to Lochbuie to photograph some stone sheep fanks from the air for the small exhibition I am taking part in in March at An Tobar.  This is Lochbuie from above Laggan. 


Kinlochspelve fank.

I had a job using the drone at Ulva Ferry to film the arrival and unloading of a modular house which is prebuilt in a factory and delivered on site in 5 pieces.  There are a total of 4 houses being built for the Mull and Iona Community Trust.  They are going to be economic to heat and affordable to rent houses for local families.  With wonderful views! 

Loch na Keal, Eorsa with Ben More beyond. 

Toechtamhor in the winter sun. 

Long shadows, mid afternoon over East, Middle and West. 

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