Monday, 23 April 2018

Murky Monday

Not such a great day, weather wise, today, but we have still managed a good walk to one of the raised beaches on the northern coast of Colonsay.  We have had spits and spots of rain, heavy rain, smearny rain, weak glimmers of sunshine and cold air all day.  

Early morning walk :
 Walk from Kiloran to the raised beach :
An ancient ancient gorse bush which looks like something from Middle Earth.
Below, can you see a distinguished profile of a man who looks as though he is a player in a Shakespearean drama!
In the distance, very faintly, we could see the isle of Mull.
The raised beach
The product of a wet afternoon, spent fiddling about with strands of willow, birch, bramble and honeysuckle, then finished off with the skeleton leaves of magnolia.  Not exactly a masterpiece, and a real struggle because I didn't know what I was doing, but I managed to fashion a sort of something!
By nine o'clock this evening the strong winds had blown the rain clouds away towards the mainland, and the skies were clear.  I took the dogs down on to the beach at Kiloran for a much needed run around.  
In between mouthfuls of seaweed, Ted took off!  
 The best bit?  We had the whole place to ourselves!

Sunday, 22 April 2018

A mixed bag of weather

On 1st May last year the whole of the area shown in the photo below was burnt and blackened by a wild fire, which swept across a huge acreage.  Within a few days of the fire green shoots began to appear, and now, one year later, the whole area is covered in the finest strands of straw-like stems from the grasses which emerged from the charred landscape.  
The day dawned wet and windy.  Before breakfast, the dogs and I had a very soggy and muddy walk through the outer gardens of Colonsay House.  (Still magical, even when drippy).  By late morning the strong wind had blown the rain across to the mainland and we had some sunshine and the opportunity for a longer walk.  We walked along the road towards Scalasaig.  No cars as the island is very quiet at the moment - the lull before the storm of the Spring Festival which is due to kick off next weekend.  Then we cut in down this track, to walk back round to the cottage.
This delicious little clump of violets have a real room with a view, about five feet up near the top of the dry stone wall!  
The climate on this island encourages a multitude of mosses and also different types of liverworts, which grow on the bark of trees.  I don't think they are as attractive as the mosses, but intriguing lifeforms nevertheless.
Later in the afternoon, with the weather closing in again, my cousin and I ventured down on to one of the island's raised beaches, which sit up above the sand.  They are formed of millions of smooth pebbles and boulders.  A geologist's delight!

Saturday, 21 April 2018

Saturday, 21 April 2018

Day two on our paradise island, and an early morning walk with the dogs, through the outer gardens of Colonsay House.  Magical, as always.
In early morning sunshine, nothing to be heard but birdsong.  

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning ...

In the afternoon my cousin and I walked, at low tide, across the strand to Oransay.  The tide was still running out and previous efforts in the past showed that wellies were the best thing to wear.  Wellies or off with the walking boots and socks to wade through the water!  I left my wellingtons and backpack by an upturned rowing boat and we continued on our way.
 Looking back across the strand to Colonsay.
 We walked over to the south side of the island and looked back across to the islands of Jura and Islay.