Monday, 25 June 2012
Back to the Farnes...
Remember these chaps? Puffins, of course, and photographed on our trip across to the Farne Islands in 2008. One of THE best places in the UK for wildlife photography, and somewhere I had been dying to get to. The trip out in the boat was fine - bright and cheerful if with a stiff wind blowing. The boat did a cruise around some of the islands, coming in close to give us good views of seals...
...before dropping us off on Staple Island for the first of our two scheduled landings. Initially all went well - there were literally thousands of Puffins, and once I'd got over the tendancy to stand staring at them saying "aaaahhhhh!" a lot, I got some cracking shots of the strange looking little creatures.
Then the light started dropping though, and the wind got up a bit more, and then the rain started falling....a short while later the National Trust Ranger approached to explain that the weather was closing in badly - the boat company were getting concerned about being able to land the boat back to pick us up any later, and accordingly they were evacuating the Island. The journey back across was - frankly - quite grim. Rough, windy and very, very wet. Most of us had camera gear we were desperately trying to protect from the worst of the weather, and one or two folk were looking distinctly green. We got a refund on half the cost of the trip, but that was precious little consolation - we were bitterly disappointed.
Now though, we've booked to go back! We're crossing our fingers for better weather, and lots of puffins, and a second Island too, this time, with Terns and Guillemots. You'd think we would have had enough of Islands, wouldn't you? No, OK, you know us better than that.