A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about deer

Evening Roadtrip

Around the coast


View In search of the Hairy Coo - Scottish Highlands 2018 on Grete Howard's travel map.

Evening road trip

As it is still early (and light out), we decide to go for a wee drive this evening (see how I am getting into the local lingo already?)

Before going anywhere, we check out what is at the bottom of the lane leading downhill from the cabin.

large_61c6b5a0-927d-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg
Little Lock Broom

Before we even reach the end of the lane, we spot something moving in the long grass in the field next to the road.

large_71580000-927d-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg
Red Deer

Then we spot another – can you see it?

large_7c567bd0-927d-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

Further down in the field is yet another one, this time a sika deer – the first time we have seen one in the wild.

large_8950eeb0-927d-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

There are further red deer in the far field, separated from the others by a couple of stone walls and wire fences.

large_934b4b80-927e-11e8-9c89-233daebbbea6.jpg

large_f21c84d0-927e-11e8-9c89-233daebbbea6.jpg

Is she going to try and jump?

large_90bbd190-927f-11e8-860a-bde044ad57ec.jpg

I get very excited at the prospect and am poised ready with my camera, but all this deer wants is to fill her belly.

large_d8f29ac0-927f-11e8-860a-bde044ad57ec.jpg

Maybe...?

large_70653430-9280-11e8-860a-bde044ad57ec.jpg

Yes!

large_d66ff210-9280-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

She leaps effortlessly and gracefully to the next field.

large_38a0d120-9281-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

She is now one step nearer her two mates.

large_7cb39320-9281-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

As she contemplates the next fence, I make sure my camera is ready to catch the action again. I won't get a second attempt at this.

large_13225120-9282-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

large_9fa032c0-9282-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

large_e4dd9210-9282-11e8-88ad-6986f9091436.jpg

Reunited at last.

large_211425e0-928e-11e8-95cf-59db8f5e8997.jpg

We leave the deer to do their own thing and continue to the water's edge, where we see a couple of Harbour Seals basking on the rocks. Another first for us.

large_81763860-928e-11e8-aa88-576d35818d21.jpg

large_89fcd660-928e-11e8-aa88-576d35818d21.jpg

On our way back up the lane we see a barn swallow on the line, preening himself.

large_29a0c1e0-928f-11e8-9b56-dbbf82b89369.jpg

large_ad3404d0-9295-11e8-bd34-59a00c861b5a.jpg

From here we head out to the main road to make a small circuit around the coast.

large_7527a6d0-9297-11e8-bd34-59a00c861b5a.jpg

One of the things about the cabin is that there is no mobile signal. Wanting to phone my dad, we stop in a lay-by where our lane meets the main road to make the call once we get a connection. It's not a bad view from here over Little Loch Broom.

large_a53e2330-9297-11e8-bd34-59a00c861b5a.jpg

Being on a mission to find a 'hairy coo' (long haired highland cattle), I am disappointed to see that the cattle in the field here are not what I am after. They are quite cute though.

large_e16c7aa0-9297-11e8-bd34-59a00c861b5a.jpg

The scenery along the way is nothing short of stunning, with new, exciting vistas around every bend.

large_7edeeab0-9299-11e8-bd34-59a00c861b5a.jpg
Fish farms on Little Loch Broom

“The light is amazing!” soon becomes my mantra this evening (and for the rest of the trip) as the low sun lights up the already beautiful scenery.

large_b25e1810-929a-11e8-bd34-59a00c861b5a.jpg

large_fe6c0b80-929b-11e8-ad6e-d58a78d6481f.jpg

large_ee99f220-929c-11e8-bad6-9d24bf85763c.jpg

large_f8dd0d30-929c-11e8-bad6-9d24bf85763c.jpg

large_02778c30-929d-11e8-bad6-9d24bf85763c.jpg

Horses

We stop for me to photograph a couple of black horses in a bright yellow field.

large_d7959fd0-92a0-11e8-bad6-9d24bf85763c.jpg

large_e1310930-92a0-11e8-bad6-9d24bf85763c.jpg

One of them is obviously convinced that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence.

large_ee9428f0-92a0-11e8-bad6-9d24bf85763c.jpg

Little Gruinard Beach

Scotland has some beautiful beaches, and this one looks very inviting, especially from a photographer's point of view, with its water-filled ridges reflecting the fading light. Did I mention the light is wonderful here in Scotland?

large_d109b440-94ac-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_db9215b0-94ac-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_ed7195d0-94ac-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_f97d62f0-94ac-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_08c3e8b0-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_16150710-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_2ad5d530-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_3768aca0-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg
Little Ringed Plover

large_477f0580-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_57af00e0-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

large_7a2331a0-94ad-11e8-a7bf-db4fed34b32a.jpg

We continue on our planned circular trip, although after a while we realise that it is not going to be just a 'quick drive after dinner' as planned, the route is very much further than we realise.

large_21f5a480-94b8-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg

large_306c3010-94b8-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg
Traffic jam, Scottish style

large_41929960-94b8-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg

large_4a7009f0-94b8-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg

We see very few other cars, and are a little taken back when we spot these temporary traffic lights. They seem so out of place with the rest of the route.

large_723a5940-94b8-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg

Despite spending the first 15 years of my life in Norway, which is at an even higher latitude, I am rather surprised to find how light it still is at 22:30 at night.

large_e26233a0-94b8-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg

Although there may still be a reasonable amount of light, there is not enough to get a decent photo of the deer alongside the narrow lane as we make our way back.

large_49e560b0-94b9-11e8-95c1-cb2adf7418c0.jpg

We reach the cabin over three hours after we left for a 'quick evening drive'. We go to bed tired but very content.

Posted by Grete Howard 08:07 Archived in Scotland Tagged road_trip horses scenery deer seals plover badluarach red_derr harbour_seals little_loch_broom little_gruinard_beah little_ringed_plover Comments (1)

Carlisle - Badluarach

We've finally arrived at The Wee Barn


View In search of the Hairy Coo - Scottish Highlands 2018 on Grete Howard's travel map.

We decide to forego the full English breakfast at the Premier Inn this morning, and just make do with some fresh fruit from Tesco. Cheaper and better for the diet.

After yesterday's traffic jam, we have some very pleasurable motoring today, and we soon find ourselves entering Scotland. Damn, I forgot my passport!

large_90289130-90dd-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

large_98a989e0-90dd-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

Look at these empty roads! What a change from yesterday!

large_b82c8e20-90dd-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

large_c2fb4760-90dd-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

On the way I spot a couple of amusing road signs.

large_dcf75910-90dd-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

large_e5dd7c30-90dd-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

Arria

The 10 metre high sculpture, nicknamed "Angel of the Nauld", overlooks the M80 just north of Auchenkilns. The female sculpture's large swooping arcs from her hands to her dress are based on the Gaelic name for Cumbernauld, “comar nan allt”, which translates as “the meeting of the waters”. Not quite sure how that follows, but so the story goes. The sculpture, created by Andy Scott of Kelpies fame, is part of the Cumbernauld Positive Image Project's aim “to create a distinctive image of Cumbernauld; increase residents’ pride in their town; raise awareness across Scotland of Cumbernauld’s attractiveness as a destination to live, work and play; create a sense of place and provide a positive statement about the town. Again I am not sure how this sculpture plays a role here, but she is pleasant enough to look at as we glide past on our way further north.

large_Sculpture.jpg

Pitlochry Dam and Fish Ladder

We park in the centre of Pitlochry town and follow the signs to the dam and visitors centre on foot. The road leads through the town, down a hill, under a bridge, along a narrow lane, up another hill and down a slope before it gets to a dedicated car park for the visitors centre. Doh. At least we get a little bit of exercise rather than driving to the nearest car park. We have spent enough time in the car the last couple of days.

I am officially intrigued by the Fish Ladder, as although I do understand that it facilitates salmon to travel upstream during breeding season, I have never actually seen one.

large_ca048570-90e3-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

But first we stop for coffee and cake in the modern visitors centre overlooking the hydroelectric plant.

large_e23b1960-90e3-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

large_eea3d390-90e3-11e8-a2bf-d703fd2fb1c3.jpg

We walk across specially constructed walkways from one bank of the river to the other (not the one shown in the photo below), and although the power plant is certainly impressive, it's the reflections in the loch that first and foremost grab my attention.

large_3bed8f70-90f2-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

large_483b95b0-90f2-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

large_62dc24c0-90f2-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

Hydro-electricity is produced using the power of running water to turn the turbines in the power station.

large_02fabe80-90f3-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

large_216db250-90f3-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

Once we reach the fish ladder on the opposite bank, I have a feeling we have seen something similar before, possibly in Madeira in 2003. Either way, it is a pretty cool idea.

large_64d1bdc0-90f3-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

This is how it works: each of the 34 tiered pools has an opening below water level to allow fish to swim through to the next level. The ladder is even equipped with a fish counter (the sort that counts each fish, not sells fillets) so they can monitor the success of the ladder. Some 250,000 salmon have climbed those stairs since the ladder was first opened in 1952. That is very impressive.

large_eea566f0-90f3-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

I continue taking photos of the dam and surroundings while David goes back into town to collect the car. He's a good man.

large_726b1340-90f4-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

large_7daefc80-90f4-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

large_8b0a7b20-90f4-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

large_a590a460-90f4-11e8-8688-4d223678df04.jpg

Cairngorms

We head for the hills of the Cairngorms (a mountain range and national park in Scotland) to find somewhere to have our picnic.

large_3b4d0380-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_32c18380-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_4cb1d560-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_5f2c8410-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_74466eb0-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_83525c70-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_8fb411c0-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_9d515450-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

This will do for a picnic

large_ae36bd00-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

Not a bad view

large_c4866880-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_da661420-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg
Cowboy Caviar (mixed bean salad) with chicken and Southwest Sauce

large_f1c078e0-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

We are fascinated to find, as we make our way even further north on smaller roads, that each layby is identified by a number. I have not seen that anywhere else. There are plenty of them too, something that we come to appreciate a lot as the week goes on.

large_ffecb500-910f-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg

large_0cec09e0-9110-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg
Hmm, but not today...

Highland cattle

As you may have noticed, I have called this blog “In search of the Hairy Coo”. 'Hairy coo' is of course the local slang for the adorable long-haired Highland Cattle. There are two reasons for this – I was tasked with getting some photos of me petting a highland cow by my friend Kay; and also because it reminds me very much of my first visit to Scotland in 1974 with my parents. My mum adored these cute bovine animals and used to call them 'hippy cows'.

large_e3aa38f0-9113-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg
'Pretend' Hairy Coo at the Ralia Highland Gateway Centre where we stop for a pee break.

large_17b3c170-9114-11e8-aea6-3f94b2c6eff2.jpg
Apparently, cuddling a metal coo doesn't count.

Sat Nav

Mid afternoon the Sat Nav dies, meaning we have to revert to the old fashioned way of finding our way using a map. Those of you who know me well, will realise that it is not a good idea to leave me to do the navigating while map reading. Not only do I get my lefts and rights mixed up, my sense of direction is so poor that I can get lost in my own back garden.

Let's hope we make it to the cabin this evening without too many detours and without having a major falling-out.

large_fdafd530-918f-11e8-b07b-ab02e4c908ed.jpg

Love the roads and the scenery!

large_1a60a6a0-9190-11e8-b07b-ab02e4c908ed.jpg

large_27ccee20-9190-11e8-b07b-ab02e4c908ed.jpg

large_31721b80-9190-11e8-b07b-ab02e4c908ed.jpg

large_3e3fd910-9190-11e8-b07b-ab02e4c908ed.jpg
Loch Droma

large_4992b670-9190-11e8-ace2-098191884081.jpg

The further north we get (and nearer our cabin), the narrower the road gets.

large_8c945690-9190-11e8-ace2-098191884081.jpg

We find the turning off the main road without any major drama, despite me map reading, although I fear the credit has to go to David, who has a photographic memory when it comes to maps: once he has seen the route on a map, he can drive there.

large_fe9abf80-9191-11e8-b07b-ab02e4c908ed.jpg

The Wee Barn

I booked this holiday on a whim a few weeks ago. We have been talking about visiting Scotland for a while now, but no actual plans, and certainly not this year. I thought I would just do an internet search to give me some idea of costs, and then I saw The Wee Barn and fell in love. Ten minutes later I had booked it.

large_3d6942a0-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

The Wee Barn is in what you could safely call a remote location. Some two miles down a single track road with a handful of other houses, a post box and telephone kiosk, It is situated down the lane leading to the landing where ferries take passengers across Little Loch Broom to the smattering of houses the other side. Surrounded by countryside on three side and water on the fourth, the setting is idyllic.

large_4bef5e90-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

large_9e892610-91d5-11e8-8872-27ea9b15637c.jpg

The cabin itself is small, of course (there is a huge hint in the name), but more than adequate for us, with a living room / dining room and a very well equipped kitchen.

large_5bca5c20-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

large_65637b90-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

large_6f1c7f10-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

As well as a bedroom and bathroom, the entrance hall has a comfy chair and a well stocked bookcase.

large_7a3d4ff0-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

Once we have unpacked, I whip up a quick dinner of cold Black Forest ham, scrambled eggs and roasted tomatoes.

large_b30dd660-91a5-11e8-9cec-4b641b7aceb1.jpg

After dinner a settle down to relax, but David has other ideas, and suggests going out for a short drive. I shall make that the subject of the next blog entry however.

Posted by Grete Howard 04:16 Archived in Scotland Tagged scotland salmon road_trip sculpture seal deer motorway highland_cow pitlochry cairngorms road_signs premier_inn arria angel_of_the_nauld auchenkilns cumbernauld andy_scott power_station hydro_electric fish_ladder hary_coo sika_deer red_deer harbour_seal Comments (3)

Kanha National Park Part II - Suri Zone

Another tiger?


View Tiger, Tiger, Burning Bright - India 2017 on Grete Howard's travel map.

When we arrive back at Kipling Camp after our morning safari drive, we are greeted with the very welcome wet flannels (a custom I like very much – here in India it happens after every game drive and is very much a necessity because of all the dust. In Africa, despite the same amount of dirt generated, the flannels are generally just offered on your very first arrival at a lodge, not usually thereafter)

Tara

One of the main reasons I chose Kipling Camp when I was in the planning stages of this trip, was Tara, the resident elephant. Featured in the book Travels on my Elephant by Mark Shand, Tara was gifted to Kipling Camp in 1989 (you can read the full story of how Tara came to live at Kipling Camp here)

large_Tara_2.jpg

large_Tara_4.jpg

large_Tara_5.jpg

Lunch

A lunch table is laid out in the shady courtyard under the trees, and we have a refreshing nimbu soda (fresh lime soda) while we wait for the food to arrive.

large_Kipling_Camp_6.jpg

large_Kipling_Camp_5.jpg

large_Lunch_buff.._dhal__curd.jpg
Lamb curry, okra, chillies, dhal, yogurt, chutney, poppadom and puri

All around the grounds there are signs of wildlife, from butterflies to frogs and birds.

large_Butterfly.jpg

large_Greater_Coucal_1.jpg
Greater Coucal

large_Orange_Hea..nd_Thrush_2.jpg
Orange Headed Ground Thrush

Afternoon Game Drive

This afternoon we have been allocated the Suri Zone of Kanha National Park and we head off to see what this area has to offer.

large_King_Vulture_2.jpg
King Vulture, a very rare bird and a first for us

large_Hanuman_Langur_21.jpg

large_Hanuman_Langur_22.jpg

large_Hanuman_Langur_23.jpg
Hanuman langurs

Sambar Deer

large_Sambar_Deer_1.jpg

large_Sambar_Deer_2.jpg

large_Sambar_Deer_3.jpg

large_Sambar_Deer_5.jpg

Porcupine
There is much excitement when a porcupine is spotted; it's an extremely unusual rare sighting indeed and a first for us. Absolutely rubbish photo, as by the time I'd turned and pointed my camera, he was well on his way into the undergrowth. But trust me: this reallys is a porcupine.

large_Porcupine_1.jpg

large_Owlet__Jungle_11.jpg
Jungle Owlet

Gaur (Indian Bison) - the laregst wild cow in the world

large_Gaur__Indian_Bison__21.jpg

large_Gaur__Indian_Bison__22.jpg

large_Gaur__Indian_Bison__23.jpg

Jackals

large_Jackals_21.jpg

large_Jackals_22.jpg

large_Jackals_23.jpg

large_Jackals_24.jpg

large_Hanuman_Langur_24.jpg
Hanuman Langur

large_Stork__Lesser_Adjutant_1.jpg
This guy is also a new one to us: Lesser Adjutant

large_Stork__Lesser_Adjutant_4.jpg
And then he was gone

large_Indian_Roller_21.jpg
Indian Roller

large_Cheetal_an..ck_Drongo_1.jpg
Cheetal with a Black Drongo passenger

large_Black_Drongo_11.jpg

large_Cheetal_wi..mmon_Myna_1.jpg
Cheetal with a Common Myna on its back

large_7EB9BBFD9497CFF097251B7E47E20709.jpg
Cheetal

Barashinga
This particular genus of Barashinga, the Southern Swamp Deer, is only found here in Kanha National park, so it is obviously our first sighting in the wild, thus generating considerable excitement.

large_Barashinga_1.jpg

We ford the river in a beautifully serene area, where we also spot a Common Kingfisher.

large_Watery_Creek_1.jpg

large_Crossing_the_River_2.jpg

large_Common_Kingfisher_1.jpg
Common Kingfisher

Bees Nest
The action of the bees moving in unison on this nest reminds me of a Mexican Wave.

large_Bees_Nest_1.jpg

.

Barashinga in the water
As the sun becomes lower in the sky, we spot a small herd of barashinga in the water. As we stop they look up and across at us, water dripping from their heads, backlit by the evening sun. Another magical moment.

large_Barashinga_in_the_water_6.jpg

large_Barashinga_in_the_water_7.jpg

More animals backlit by the low sun, this time cheetal

large_Cheetal__Backlit_1.jpg

large_Cheetal__Backlit_2.jpg

More barashinga

large_Barashinga_3.jpg

The last rays of the sun are seeping through the trees.

large_Barashinga_4.jpg

large_Rose_Ringed_Parakeet_21.jpg
Rose Ringed Parakeet

Sambar
The light is faded fast and it is getting dark quickly.

large_Sambar_31.jpg

Tiger
As we make our way back towards the exit gate to leave the park for the evening, I comment to Lyn that as we haven't seen a tiger, at least we don't have to tip the guide quite as much this afternoon. Then we turn a corner and see a number of vehicles all looking into the bushes.

Just as we pull up alongside them, we spot a tiger disappearing into the undergrowth. Wow! It is brief, but at least I manage to shoot off a couple of frames.

large_Tiger_201.jpg

large_Tiger_202.jpg

large_Tiger_206.jpg

“Hold on!” shouts Rahim, as he reverses the Gypsy at great speed, around sharp bends, on a badly potholed road, uphill; with some of the most admirable driving skills I have ever been party to. Experience and knowledge means he knows exactly where the tiger will be coming out of the bushes.

And he is right, of course. Again.

large_Tiger_209.jpg

Great excitement ensues as we are joined by the other vehicles (whose drivers were not as on-the-ball, or maybe not as capable, as Rahim, and thus much slower off the mark), to watch the tiger saunter down the road.

large_Shooting_Tigers_1.jpg

large_Shooting_the_Tiger_2A.jpg

large_Tiger_210.jpg

large_Tiger_211.jpg

large_Tiger_212.jpg

large_Tiger_214.jpg

It is getting quite dark now and I am having to push my ISO right up to 8,000 in order to get a decent shot.

large_Tiger_216.jpg

ISO 10,000 now, despite Rahim having moved the vehicle nearer the tiger for a closer shot.

large_Tiger_219.jpg

large_Tiger_220.jpg
ISO 16,000 - gotta love the Canon 5D IV's low light capabilities!

Sadly we have to say “goodbye” to our new-found friend, as we have a deadline time to be out of the gate.

large_Tiger_221.jpg

There is now a mad rush to get to the gate so as not to be fined for overstaying our welcome.

large_Rushing_out_of_the_park_1.jpg

It's impossible to avoid the dust generated by the other vehicles.

large_Rushing_out_of_the_park_2.jpg

We do make a couple of stops though, one for a Sambar crossing the road...

large_Sambar_29.jpg

… and some wild boar.

large_Wild_Boar_21.jpg

large_Wild_Boar_22.jpg

Including some little baby piglets.

large_Wild_Boar_23.jpg

large_Wild_Boar_25.jpg

We make it out of the park without penalty and return to the lodge for a shower, change, drink and dinner.

What an amazing day we've had!

large_AEF63434BBDEB7DEC77433AB3FE561FC.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 14:50 Archived in India Tagged india elephant lunch tiger tara national_park deer butterfly kanha bison bees vulture parakeet langur kingfisher jackal gaur chital sambar myna drongo indian_food swamp_deer porcupine coucal kipling_camp cheetal wild_cow travels_on_my_elephant mark_shand nimbu_soda thrush indian_bison adjutant barashinga spotted_deer wild-boar piglets Comments (6)

(Entries 1 - 3 of 3) Page [1]