Off to Iona

A quick look over Loch Don first thing showed the Sandpiper just by our cottage so I couldn’t resist a couple more shots in the beautiful early light.

The plan was made last night, today we were off to Iona and we planned to catch the 9.55 ferry, did we? We did not!

Was it because we were late up or slow to get ready? No! Maybe there was a traffic jam? No! The truth of the mater is I saw two chaps pulled up at the side of the road looking up at the cliffs. Window down I asked if they were watching an eagle or hoping to. They replied that no hope was needed they were watching two Golden eagles! So we pulled off the road(not easy to do on Mull) and looked up, there they were high on the cliff top. Just then a rain shower arrived! As you will see form the one picture I put here photographing them was a lost cause but even with the naked eye they could be see. IMG_2938 golden eagle

On to Fionnphort and we caught the next ferry over to Iona and there was no more sign of rain although it was, as forecast, a little  cooler today. We hoped to see or at least hear the Corncrake which Iona is famous for. We tried first behind the fire station which can be a lucky place for them but not today.

We walked back past the jetty and had a good walk beyond the abbey (we didn’t visit it this time) up to the north coast of the island. On the way we saw a pair of my favourite bird, Wheatear. The male was in such tip-top condition that I had to look twice to make sure that was what they were!

We arrived at the beach where some frolicked, all at lunch and one dug in the sand, guess who that was!IMG_5563 sprocket

The coast line is beautiful and I loved the colours in the rocks.

Roo has just sent me this picture, of course we knew she was taking one with the aid of the time delay but hadn’t realised the clever set up!image

There were plenty of sheep on Iona and they had plenty of lambs. We have seen this breed around the island and are rather taken with them.

On the way to the beach we, of course, visited the local shops mostly selling crafts. We saw lots of nice things but largely resisted temptation. We also stopped for coffee were this little Robin made me think of home, hope you like him Alice. The old kitchen machinery was in the garden there.

On our walk, there and back we did not hear one call from the Corncrake, bother we had really hoped to get them today. With not too much time till we were planning to return to Mull we heard the unmistakable Corncrake call over and over again. We stood watching, knowing we must be very near to it/them but they didn’t show. Never mind that is typical of the crake so we were satisfied to have heard it. We could catch the ferry happy!

It is quite a drive across Mull back to our cottage and on the way we saw another eagle flying, beautiful. When we reached the spot where we had seen the eagles earlier this morning there were several cars there so I guess the word was out!

We are now back in our cottage listening to rain falling but as Roo has been busy in the kitchen and I can smell chilli so I am happy to go nowhere else tonight!

The Corn crake brought our bird count to 230, very happy with that.

2 thoughts on “Off to Iona

  1. Sorry to show my ignorance, but is that the golden eagle you are referring to?
    Lovely picture of the four/five of you. You are looking soooo well gillian!


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