Mark’s Here.

Last time I looked it was the 5th of December, I had just blogged before departing for Inverness. Who should I meet on the pier/slip at Sconscer but Paul C, of ‘Life at the End of The Road’ Blog fame. He was looking for a bottle of Rona whisky and I just happened to have one. I don’t know if it was for him or his Fathers Xmas. I think he may have bought some duty free lately, anyway.

Paul

Paul

He was waiting to go home but had time to explain the new pier, enough said. Onto Inverness then up early next day to pick up L, she had been down South and was happy to be heading home to Rona. But not before a visit to Shieldaig where we stayed with Kenny and Linda ‘Torridon Seas Tours’ . It was a rather driech drive up through the snow and dodging stags but a lovely meal was waiting for us, our first Xmas dinner of the season, I can highly recommend ‘M&S’ turkey!!

Preparing The Starter Shieldaig Style

Preparing The Starter Shieldaig Style

We drove over to Portree early Saturday and met up with Mark who was coming over to help with some stalking. We have quite a few too many hinds so Xmas is coming and with plenty venison orders we have a bit of stalking to do. First of all we had to sort out the Lodge and stock and on calling the sheep for a feed who arrived but ‘Julie’ our friendly hind. I grabbed the camera and as you can see she is far from camera shy.

Hungry Hind

Hungry Hind

It is good to see her about the Lodge as we thought she was missing. She is now at least 11 years old and looking good. We didn’t discuss the stalking with her although they did not hang about when Mark was trying out his rifle.

Target Practice

Target Practice

We set off next day for a wander and saw enough hinds but not the right ones!!! So a wet wait looking at a small herd was quite rewarding to see 4 from here feeding away. The brown smudge above Marks head is a hind (honest).

Getting Wet, watching deer.

Getting Wet, watching deer.

The hinds won so we headed back to the Lodge for a break and to get a couple of hours continuing the work on the genny shed.

Refurb'

Refurb’

We headed out at night again but more for a look. An early start to-day was very rewarding with a lovely sunrise and a beautiful winters day unfolding. Wall to wall sunshine and light winds were the order of the day. We didn’t see a lot all the way round the North end of the Island, the biggest excitement was the submarine coming into the Qinetic range, alas too far away for the wee camera. We had a stalk into two likely suspects but they saw us so the hinds won again. On the way over to the Lodge we came across two stags at the side of the road and as usual at this time they were unconcerned, it was a different story a month and a half ago.

Spying The North End

Spying The North End

After lunch it was back to the genny shed. We are trying to keep the damp out so a skin of wood round it  should deflect the driving rain and the cables/pipe removal should allow for better drainage. More pics tomorrow, the weathers supposed to be fine.

Later in the day we headed back over to Dry Harbour to look for hinds but yet again the hinds won.

Late Summer Sun

Late Summer Sun

We are now looking forward to tomorrow’s sunshine (Tuesday), we’ll try the South end, that should be interesting. We have a cull figure BUT we are seeing hardly any deer and very little impact so our cull figure might become redundant, which of course is good for the deer!!

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About Bill Cowie

I've been living on the island since April 2002, alone for the first 5 years, my partner L joined me in 2007. We manage the Island for a Danish family who bought the Island in the early 90's. Their hopes for the Island are to make it self sufficient supporting its inhabitants and that is where we come in. We look after the stock, 3 holiday cottages, machinery, boat and of course the visitors. It is pretty challenging but it is a beautiful place to live and work, we love it and strangely enough we love it even more in the depths of winter when all is quiet apart from the gales and rain. We do a bit of fishing, stock work, stalking deer and loads of other stuff. We have good support from lots of people whom we have met over the years and have become involved in the Island. Too many to mention here but keep an eye on the blog, they'll be there for sure in the future.
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