Winter Highlands

Welcome to my blog which I intend to update throughout the year.

My first post is from a couple of months ago from a fantastic trip to the Highlands of Scotland.

Freshly fallen snow greeted my arrival and I’d booked a morning in Pete Cairns’ red squirrel hide and after a short wait the resident ‘Reds’ turned up for breakfast.

The image above would have been good enough from the day but luck was on my side and the heavens decided to open with a fresh falling of snow that simply added that extra factor to the following images.

The next day I spent the day with Neil McIntyre, starting the day at his red squirrel site. With the sun shining the images proved to be much different from the previous day.

Plus with better light I was able to capture a moving subject.

With a fill of  ‘Reds’ in the bag we headed up into the mountains to search for mountain hare. With snow above my knees the walk up was definitely interesting especially carrying my equipment. On the way up to find the hares a small herd of red deer stags proved to be very photogenic.

With expert eyes (not mine) a couple of mountain hare’s were spotted. To start some ‘ in the environment’ shots were taken.

We then attempted to get closer, but the hares were not going to play ball and ran off over the mountain range. However with Neil’s knowledge he spotted one individual that he thought we could have a chance with. With careful stalking…well as careful you can move through knee deep snow we gradually got closer and closer eventually allowing approach to within around 10 meters.

Part of the final day was spent at the Cairngorms ski centre where a small flock of snow bunting’s are in resident.

Why it’s been nearly ten years since my last visit to Scotland I really don’t know. Hopefully I will return again this year. What a beautiful country in all of the seasons. But as my last image shows despite the winter wonderland I had the pleasure of seeing the wildlife residents have a tough time just to get around in the harsh conditions.

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