Welcome to Islay Weblog

Islay Weblog Brings News and Events from Islay

Welcome to Islay Weblog

Islay Weblog Brings News and Events from Islay

Welcome to Islay Weblog

Islay Weblog Brings News and Events from Islay

Loch Gruinart

Loch Gruinart

Kildalton Cross

Kildalton Cross

Islay Cloud Formations

Islay Cloud Formations

Atlantic Sunset

Beautiful Sunsets on Islay Westcoast

Port Charlotte

On the Rhinns of Islay

Loch Indaal

Loch Indaal

Atlantic West Coast

Sanaigmore Bay Saligo Bay

Jura

Isle of Jura

Islay Whisky Distilleries

Islay is famous for it's malt whisky



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White Tailed Sea Eagle on Islay Mobbed by Crows

Today was one of those days, it was sunny at times and there was hardly any wind, quite a relief after the rainy and windy days of lately. It makes you wonder sometimes how the birds of prey survive during such terrible weather. Already yesterday, when I was out to Caol Ila, the weather improved and I had spotted more than 8 Buzzards on my way from Portnahaven. Today we did the circular walk from Portnahaven to Claddach. With the story above in mind I decided to mount my tele lens on the camera and presto! Just as we walked back from the Wavegen Powerstation a White Tailed Sea Eagle appeared from over MacKenzie Island and flew north right in front of us. Despite the bad light conditions I managed to get a few nice pictures. Just as the Eagle passed in front of us a few Hooded Crows appeared from behing a hill and started to mob the Eagle, see picture 2. A split-second later one of the Hooded Crows actually engaged in a fight with the Eagle as you can see from the third picture before they disappeared behind the dunes. Exciting moments when you're witnessing the scene from behind a camera. As I'm not such a keen birder I believe this is a White Tailed Sea Eagle but I'm not 100% sure, it could have been a Golden Eagle as well. If anyone knows exactly what it is please let me know, thanks!


The Eagle flies directly in front of us heading north


The Hooded Crows appear and start to mob the Eagle


One of the Crows engage in a fight with the Eagle

Tag: eagle wildlife

Islay Ferry Timetable Changes 25 & 26 Oct

Due to the windy conditions of this weekend and technical issues with one of the ferries there are some changes in the timetable for today, 25th of October, and tomorrow, Sunday the 26th of October.

Saturday 25th October:
Please be advised that due to adverse weather the 2015hrs sailing from Port Askaig has been cancelled. The vessel will berth overnight in Port Askaig. and the first sailing weather permitting will be the 0945hrs from Port Askaig.

Sunday 26th October:
Please be advised that due to Technical Issues the 0945hrs sailing from Kennacraig and the 1300hrs sailing from Port Ellen on Sunday 26th October have been cancelled.

Travellers are reminded that due to the adverse weather forecast of South Westerly winds gusting in excess of 45 knots the Islay service is on amber alert for today, Saturday 25th October, and Sunday 26th October and as such may be liable to disruptions or cancellations at short notice.

Winter Timetables
Please also note that starting Monday 27th of October the Islay ferry service will run according to the winter timetables

Tag: ferry travel weather

Colour Show at Port Wemyss and Portnahaven

At the end of the day, just before sunset, we went for a lovely walk around Port Wemyss and Portnahaven. We included the path of the fisherman which was interesting due to the high tide. Although most of the day was grey and cloudy it all changed later in the afternoon and we were presented with a rather stunning colour show presented by the breaking clouds and setting sun. Below are a few pictures I'd like to share with you to give you an impression of the beautiful Autumn skies on Islay today.


View from above the shop at Portnahaven


Rainbow over Port Wemyss


Setting sun behind the chapel on Orsay Island


View towards Mackenzie Island

Tag: port wemyss portnahaven autumn sunset rainbow

Free Film Screening at Islay Screenmachine

Helen Ross from the European Parliament Office in Edinburgh sent the following info: "I am writing to inform you about a film screening, that we are organising in collaboration with the Screen Machine, which will take place on Thursday 6th November at 5:30pm in Port Ellen. This is part of the Lux Prize Film Days and we are organising film screenings across Scotland."

"The film is called "Girlhood" and focuses on the lives of young people in a Paris suburb. It will be in French, with English subtitles. The screening is free of charge to attend, but please note that the film is certified suitable for those aged 15 and above. For more information, to watch the trailer or to book tickets, please click here"

Tag: screenmachine port ellen

Wee Report and Pictures of Wild Islay Weather

The remains of Hurricane Gonzalo passed Islay today with strong winds. The highest windspeed on Islay, a gust of 66Mph, was recorded at Port Ellen this morning at 10am. The overall strongest gust of 70Mph in the UK was recorded on the Isle of Wight. Due to the strong winds the ferries were cancelled the entire day. Tomorrow the ferries will sail according to timetable although the 07:45hrs sailing tomorrow morning (Wednesday 22 Oct) will be departing Kennacraig 45 mins earlier than scheduled at 07:00hrs.

This stormy weather was great to go outside and to capture some of the wave action in between the many showers, some with hail. Below are a few images taken during the day. I was pleasantly surprised that BBC Scotland selected the picture of Orsay and the Rhinns Lighthouse for their main article about the storm.


Waves near Claddach


Orsay Island and the Rhinns Lighthouse in the morning light


Seagull soaring over the waves


Another view over the Atlantic

Tag: storm weather waves

Stormy Islay Weather Forecasted

The beautiful spell of weather seems to have ended today with more showers and stronger winds, the morning ferry had to divert to Port Askaig due to adverse weather. Speaking of which, the winds are likely to pick up even more on Tuesday when the remnants of hurricane Gonzalo will influence weather in large parts of Scotland. The Met Office said gales with winds of more than 50mph were likely inland and gusts of 60-70mph in exposed coastal areas in the west and north are possible. This will probably have an effect on the ferries as well so check the latest travel news for updates before you travel to and from the island. The stormy weather will hopefully provide some opportunities for spectacular sea and wave pictures. This morning we walked towards the Currie Sands just outside Portnahaven and had a wee taste of what might come later on this week.

Tag: weather waves sea portnahaven

Site Visit Islay Community Wind Turbine

When we drove over the High Road yesterday, Friday the 17th of October, we noticed that the tower and nacelle, the conical part in the top of the turbine which houses the generator, were up. With the weather being very nice today we decided to hike up the track from Glenegedale to the site of the Islay Community Wind Turbine for a closer look and some pictures.

We had parked the car near Build Base on the High Road. The site access road is a few hundred metres back towards Bowmore and the distance to the site is almost 2 miles, a most pleasant walk due to the lovely weather. However, this is scenery wise not the most interesting part of Islay. North from the track further down to the turbine is a large black area without any vegetation which looks like peat has been extracted without replacing the grassy top layer.

On our way to the turbine we saw the workmen digging a trench in the peaty soil next to the track for the thick red power cable. At the site itself you can see how high the turbine really is. Quite interesting to see were the three blades which were still on the ground, fifteen metres each. I had an interesting chat with one of the German engineers from Enercon GMBH, the German company based in Aurich who are installing the turbine. These engineers travel all over the world and have recently been as far as Romania, Norway, Sweden and Canada. The largest turbines they install at the moment are 150 metres high with blades of almost 50 metres. Continue reading....

A Warm Islay Welcome

While the rain is ticking on the windows we find ourselves in a comfortable and warm home in Portnahaven. We are gradually getting back to normality after our move to Islay, which was quite turbulent to say the least. The welcome however was heartwarming. Many Ileach welcomed us on their island and everyone we met has been most kind to get us started in our new lives here. So far so good! Portnahaven is a fabulous village to live in and we've already made some beautiful walks and enjoyed some amazing sunsets and sunrises. For us this part of the island was one we never stayed for longer than a couple of hours during a day-time visit, but now we can really experience "life on the edge" being so close to the sea and exposed to the wild Atlantic weather. Speaking of which, so far the weather has been very kind to us. We had an amazing quiet and sunny spell of weather although right now it seems to be gradually changing to weather patterns more fitting to this time of year. Not that we mind, we are actually looking forward to some wild weather and I will happily share images and videos of the winter storms that are likely, and hopefully, to hit this side of the island. For now I'll post some stunning views of our first week on our wee corner of the island!


Houses on King Street lit up by the sunset

Continue reading.....

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