Sunday, 7 February 2010

High Points

Today I went for a walk with a friend up the highest hill in Shetland, Ronas Hill at 450m. It was a bit of an adventure as it's years since I've even tried to get out on the hills, but it wasn't a long walk and we could drive have way up, even so I know I did it!

Looking back at Collar Firth Hill where we parked at the masts

Mid Field, part way up, the summit in the far distance

The chambered cairn at the summit, full of snow

Some views from the top...

North to Fethaland, the northern end of mainland Shetland

South West to Eshaness

East to the island of Yell

The route back saw us following a burn that lead to some waterfalls before we contoured back round to the car. It was great fun but exhausting, sometimes on the snow, sometimes in the snow and not always sure. There were holes through the snow and ice where the burn appeared briefly before disappearing again and even little crevase like patches where the snow and ice tunnel over the burn had collapsed a bit. The highlight though had to be watching several Arctic Hares as we traversed back to the car, black tipped ears with a bluey grey coat mid way betwen their winter and summer plummage. I felt like just sitting there for ages and watching but it wasn't too warm. Alas, no photo's of them.

I know there's a burn here some where...

Mini-crevasses but big enough to hurt yourself

The burn emerging from the snow as a gentle set of falls

The final high point of the day was meeting Clare and Beren at Muckle Ayre and being lucky enough to see our very first otter in the wild. It was only a short time but a wonderful sight and to see it swimming through the crystal clear waters in the geo below me was awesome. Alas, like the hares my camera wasn't up to catching it.

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