Sunday, 26 January 2014

The Point of Fethaland

In a break in the weather my friend and I went for a walk from Sand Voe, near North Roe, up the western coast of Fethaland to The Point of Fethaland

The walk out there on this route is fairly tough going at this time of the year over sodden steep ground, but it's well worth the effort, especially as it led to us seeing two otters close up. The route we came back on is much more straight forward along a good track. We could have gone around the eastern coast too, that's fairly tough going too, but there wasn't enough daylight for us to do that this time.

Other than enjoying the wonderful coast and seeing the otters, seals and birds we were looking forward to getting to the Point of Fethaland, which is the most northerly tip of mainland Shetland, and also looking at  the remains of an ancient site for making bowls and containers from soapstone on the eastern coast in Clebber Geo.

Once we noticed the carvings we saw them everywhere. These are partially carved out blocks of stone that would be hollowed out to make storage vessels. Other examples can be seen near Cunningsburgh. The rocks were also covered in carved names which was both interesting and disappointing; we didn't add ours to what is a scheduled ancient monument.

By the time we'd explored the headland and carvings it was getting on and we had to get home to get the haggis on for Burn's Night, so we took the easy route back to the car along a few good tracks.

I had intended to do video of the walk with my new camera, but tragedy struck! It was on it's tripod recording us leaving the car park when it fell over! My ultra wide angle lens took a big bash, bending the metal lens hood and the camera initially wouldn't switch back on, and when it did it wasn't working quite right with a line down the LCD display. I really just wanted to cry and go home there and then, but carried on anyway. Thankfully once I'd got home and had a chance to look at it properly it was OK and though the lens hood is well battle scarred and needed straightening the lens seems to still be fine too. Phew!

Anyway here's a rough and ready video of the walk from my action camera...

Once home we got the dinner on and had a rather unique Burn's Night with the haggis being addressed to the accompaniment on Beren on his toy accordion, his friend Barron on drum and me on didgeridoo which was a perfect end to a less than perfect day.

As I type we have force 10 gales and rain again with the promise of snow and no ferries will arrive until 9.30am on Tuesday on Up Helly Aa day. It's not looking good for the evening procession either, fingers crossed...

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