Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Chilly in the Highlands.

We have been enveloped in freezing fog for the past few days which has been blowing in from the North Sea, travelling along the Moray Firth and sweeping down the Great Glen. Temperatures during the day have stayed well below freezing with overnight temperatures of at least minus 10C in the Cairngorms. Today on the news it was stated that temps were minus 15C in the Highlands and a climber has been reported missing on Ben Nevis, but exactly why anybody would want to go out in these appalling conditions is beyond belief. Went into Inverness for a Tesco shop before Hogmanay - a bad move as it was completely manic. The good thing was the beautiful scenery as we travelled in and back.The frost was really thick on all the trees and vegetation and we felt as if we were driving through winter wonderland.
Enjoy the following slideshow of our journey.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas reflections.

 Woke up to a beautiful reflection on the loch on Christmas morning. Most of the snow on the mountains opposite has been washed away by the recent rains. As we were admiring the tranquil scene before us The Lord of the Glens cruise ship steamed right in front of our window and disturbed the reflection. It doesn't usually come this side of the loch and we realised just how big the craft is. It travelled up to Urquhart Castle where it stayed for a long while, possibly while Christmas lunch was being served. Later in the afternoon it sailed back down towards Fort William and we gave everyone on board a seasonal wave.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Loch Torr an Tuill

Managed to fit a long walk in recently after the strong winds and rain had subsided. Walked into Farigaig Forest and up the hill to Loch Torr an Tuill or 'the wee pond' as it is affectionately known by locals. The reflection of the surrounding trees in the loch was amazing and we were pleased to find two new picnic benches had been installed there. It really is a very peaceful wee loch and a beautiful place for a picnic or just a breather after the uphill climb.

Continued on our uphill walk to the view point at the very top where we found another welcome bench. The forestry had recently been at work clearing alot of the tall pine tees allowing for a much better view of Loch Ness.Through the haze we could just make out Urquhart Castle on the opposite shore.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Long tailed tits..

The colder winter weather heralds the arrival of the long tailed tits. These delightful birds are easily recognisable by their long black and white tail which is longer than their body. Their body is black and white with delicate pinkish tones with black button like eyes. They go about in noisy flocks of up to 20 birds. As we were watching the other birds gently feeding on the sunflower hearts a gang of long tailed tits suddenly flew out of the forest and descended on the fat ball hanging from the bird table until it was almost impossible to see any of the ball. After a few seconds they all zoomed off in a flurry of wings to the next feeding post.Check out more information on the long tailed tits and see them in action.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Stag Party

Been a very cold week with a sharp frost lasting for most of the day accompanied by the odd flurry of snow. We did not have the terrific snowfall on Thursday that other parts of the UK experienced. Today it has been raining all day and rather gloomy. Just when we needed cheering up a magnificent stag suddenly crossed the driveway and munched on the grass at the front of the house. Not the best of photos due to the wet and dull weather.