Friday, 20 December 2013

Stormy seas

With the high winds and tides we've had lately I've been out to check on a few coastal access points that could be in danger from the south-westerly seas. As I drove down towards Sumburgh the whole of the ness was shrouded in sea spray sweeping over from the west...

Last year we re-instated access to West Voe beach near to Sumburgh Hotel along with some protection of the dunes there. It took a bit of organising so I was keen to see how it was fairing with the rough weather. Thankfully the belt and braces job we did was looking strong and, despite it looking a bit over engineered on a nice day, you can see that it does need to be tough.

For lunch I took a wander down along Scat Ness. I could see it was going to be impressive and the chances of getting down to the Ness of Burgi were slim, but I had a look anyway. The seas were massive on the west side, something that the video below doesn't do justice. I did get some footage of the seas breaking over the small hand railed walkway between Scat Ness and the Ness of Burgi, but had accidentally recorded it on it's side! Needless to say I wasn't going to risk walking over there, though the safety rails looked like they were surviving so far. Last winter they got pretty mangaled and needed replacing.

Here's a short video (watch in HD) where you can see the relatively calm east side of the ness compared to the boiling sea of the west.

Another beach access I was keen to check on was a bit closer to home at Minn Beach at the south end of Burra. Again we'd re-instated formal access to the beach that was becoming a problem due to erosion and again it was looking nice and healthy. Job done!

The forecast for the Christmas break isn't a good,  it certainly won't be white, but we should be out and about a bit more. We're even thinking of camping over the winter solstice to see the sun rise, but not if the gale force winds keep up!


  1. Kevin, I sometimes worry about your safety. Must take care when 'shooting' these waves. Very impressive though. Thanks for continuing to share you adventures/work!!! John

    1. Don't worry I'm not too daft, though I did get a little wet. I was watching them for a while before hand to see where the worst bits were and if anythign was being thrown up.