Sunday, 27 December 2015

A few Christmas pics

We've had a nice relaxed start to the Christmas break, beginning with a family meal at Baroc before we went to see Star Wars.


The film was brilliant, though slightly spoilt by Beren telling us the major bit of plot just as we were taking our seats! Thank god no one else over heard him; we'd not have been popular!

Santa came to all of us. Of course we're very good, so we were treated well. Though I got a snack pack of dried maggots, crickets, locusts and buffalo worms, so maybe I've been a little naughty??

Beren got a new bike. An uber cool zombie BMX so we took him to the skate park to nail some tricks. It seemed the place to be...



Some 'big kids' who knew what they were doing turned up later which was a great inspiration to Beren and a worry for Clare!

We then went to the new Clickimin paths to try out some luge on Beren's new skate board...


I even avoided a trip to A&E!


It's been nice staying on island this Christmas. Much more relaxed and a lot cheaper with out the travel on top of Christmas costs too. But we have missed seeing family back home. 


A family winter walk up Ronas Hill



The weather forecast for today was quite frankly unbelievable. Sunny, dry and no wind. This is the 27th December at 60 degrees north. OK it was only supposed to be 1 or 2c, but hey! Well it turns out it was right.

Clare announced that today was the day for her and Beren to go up Ronas Hill. I was delighted, so packed the rucksack complete with the makings for bacon butties and we headed north.

A walk into the Arctic the sign says...


OK, it was a little nippy, but what a day. Ronas Hill here we come...


 Skimming stones is much easier with frozen water. Makes a cool sound too...



Onward...




Approaching Man o' Scord...


Rogas Field...


There's lots of wind stripping on the hillside...



Mid Field...



The summit chambered cairn on Ronas Hill...



And time for tea and bacon butties with a view...




 OS trig point in the centre (in the stone enclosure) and chambered cairn to the right...


Soon it was time to head back to the car before the sun set and the cold really set in...


We had a wonderful trip up there and can't imagine a better day for it even in the summer. Unfortunately, gales and rain are due to arrive again tomorrow, oh well!

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Voe of Bowland

Well I wasn't expecting the good weather we've had this weekend, so I'd been giving myself a thrashing on the turbo trainer during the week and Saturday morning as I didn't expect to get out.

It was sods law it turned out nice Saturday and a late afternoon run to Burra on the bike proved that my batteries were low, so when it turned out even better on Sunday I was not impressed with my lack of energy organisation.

Clare and Beren were busy felting and being lazy Sunday slugs, so I decided to pop out west to near the Bridge of Walls to see if there were any otters about.


I sat for a couple of hours on the cold soggy voe side as the wind built and I chilled, but didn't see any. I did see plenty of seals and a variety of birds, but no furry critters. Oh well it was nice to relax and enjoy the view.





Monday, 14 December 2015

Da Mirrie Dancers are oot!

Shooting stars and mirrie dancers on a still icy evening. Wish it was like that when I was up Ronas!




Sunday, 13 December 2015

Be careful what you wish for!

So, I've been hoping for a good freeze and last night we got it! Hmm... too good a freeze. I went to go for a mountain bike ride, but the road was like a sheet of ice. I could hardly push my bike along it never mind ride it, so back home for me.

Around 11am the gritters came round, but too little too late really; it'd be freezing up again soon. So I made some soup, a batch of bannocks and after an early lunch went for a walk up 'The Witch's Ward'. Brrrr... it was cold with the ground and tracks frozen solid, but the view was good...



I could see a bank of hail and snow heading in from Foula and the wind was getting gusty so I thought I'd better scarper before the wintery squall hit me. Sod's Law, it came to nothing!

Anyway here's a photo of my reestit mutton tattie soup and bannocks...


And if that's not enough to wet your appetite on e of the batch of pizzas I made yesterday...


There's a meteor shower due tonight. if I can be bothered and it's clear I might go out to take some photos. But at the moment I'm feeling like I need another weekend to get over my weekend!

A night walk on Ronas Hill


It seems we've had an age of gales, rain and sleet. I've been stuck in the office and stuck in the shed on my turbo trainer instead of getting out cycling. To show how bad it's got I did 200km on the turbo trainer in the shed lat Saturday. Character building stuff!

However, this weekend has been still, clear and cold. Yesterday I went out for a bike ride around Skeld with my friend.There was more ice than we expected and so we had to take it very easy, but despite that my friend still managed a low speed fall. Still it was great to get out.

Last night I decided that with the great weather I'd take a night walk up Ronas Hill to see the stars and hopefully some aurora. I put an invite on facebook for anyone who fancied coming, but unsurprisingly no one did. What a treat they missed! No wind, clear skies and the milkway. It was pretty cold and very dark with no moon, but I had it all to myself.



 And there was a little bit of aurora green showing up too!


It's very cold and icy this morning. I might risk a ride on the main roads or see if I can drag Beren out for a walk up Berry Hill. Lets hope for a proper freeze this winter and more icy stillness!

Sunday, 22 November 2015

A wintery wander around Hamnavoe

I've been feeling a bit off colour this weekend, as if a lurgy is approaching,  but with a still wintery day we thought we'd best stretch our legs and have a wander. We settled on a short trip to Hamnavoe...



Beren wanted to go down the smuggler's cave as we could see the winter sun shining through it...


Trying to be arty...


There was some snow on the hills on Foula and it looked like a few snow showers too...


Da Muckle Loch was still and crystal clear. Inviting, but not that inviting!


We wandered around towards Meal Beach before heading back to Hamnavoe and then home for some lunch.


A lovely day!


Sunday, 8 November 2015

Not quite fireworks...

It seems that when there's been a solar storm lately resulting in great aurora photos from lots of places in the UK Shetland has been cloudy and when there's been no activity it's been clear and starry. Well atleast we got a show of the lights last night. Even if they weren't very active it was a lovely evening...




I maybe should have stayed out longer or gone back later, but I was suffering. Earlier in the day I'd been for a mountain bike ride off road around Quarff and Lerwick area and going too fast around a downhill corner took a tumble hurting my neck and shoulder. Ouch, it's stiff! Anyway it was a good ride out for a few hours with a friend.

Here's a quick mobile snap of The Broch of Burland down below Brindister...


Today I will be mostly groaning...