Monday, 13 October 2014

Marloes Sands Pembrokeshire holiday june 18 th 2014

Today we are on our way to Marloes Sands which is near Martins Haven where i caught the boat over to Skomer yesterday.  it is looking like a very warm day , possibly 22 - 24 degrees and sunny :)
 After a visit to supermarket to get supplies for a picnic we have driven down past Milford Haven to Marloes ,after parking and walking down a track  to the beach we find the tide is still high but will be on its way out soon.

                          Gateholm island is straight ahead and Skokholm further beyond.

Having made our way down to the top of the beach , and clambered over rough rocks and boulders onto a bit of flattish stony ground  i notice the sky is looking amazing!     Chester is hot already and lying in the shade of this huge boulder  Awwww

                                               Hey  Mollster , doesn't she look small  lol

                                                                            Love this sky!

 The sun is coming out now as the tide recedes and we can Finally get onto the sand , the rock formations here are stunning.

 Time to play , the Terrible Twosome are running and having fun :)  they have paddled a bit but will soon be in swimming now that we can walk out into the shallow water.

                                                                     Magnificent views

                                                           There they go, Spladoosh!

                   They are both swimming now  , Yay        Mol has got the ball this time

                                                                 shot with 400mm lens 

                                                                    and Chester!

                                          Think this is the most spectacular beach i have been to!


                     Mollster swimming again :)      funny how she hated water when i first got her!

                                                            she loves the sea now lol

       The tide is well out now , beautiful flat sand , and Chester is barking for me to throw the ball!

                       Wonder how/why these huge rocks are out here well away from the cliffs!

                                             one of my favorite images of this beach

                                 a wet Mollster posing, or waiting for the ball more like

                                                               a empty beach panorama :)

                                                      Nice light illuminating the rocks :)

Time to leave the beach and just as we come to the stream that enters the beach, i spot a male Golden Ringed dragonfly :)             i manage to get quite close before it flies off , looks like it has just merged fairly recently.

 After a bite to eat in the car , i have walked along the top path to photograph the entire length of beach from high up ,   superb views from up here.

                                               a huge beach and no one on it!  go figure

                                                                  Mol is posing well :)

On our way to Little Haven now for dinner and maybe a sunset , a nice warm evening for sitting ouside :)

 Its a tiny village , spotted 3 pubs already  lol  and only about a dozen or so  houses around the hills surrounding the small cove.

 a short walk around the headland gives a view towards Broad Haven beach just around the corner from here. low evening sun is lighting up the cliffs :)

                                          a panorama of the small cove of Little Haven

                                                               and finally , Sunset :)

                                       the end of another fantastic day in Pembrokeshire

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Puffins on Skomer 17th June 2014

Today i am going to Skomer to see the Puffins , i have never seen them before so really looking forward to it.  Jan is staying back in the caravan with the dogs while i go on my own, as dogs not allowed on the island and we cannot find a kennels to take them really early in the morning . I have been told to get there for about 7 am which means getting up at 5am!!!!  i need to get near the front of the Que to get my ticket when the office opens at 8.30 but there will be more people wanting to go than there are places on the boats ,only a limited amount of people are allowed on the island each day .
   I have arrived at the car park near Marloes at 6.55 , and walk down to Martins Haven where the boat departs, i find I'm 3rd in line :)    maybe i didn't have to get here quite this early i am thinking , but within half hour there are more than enough to fill first of the three boats that sail to the island. Having got my ticket on the first boat i  will take a walk around the headland to shoot a few birds as the boat doesn't leave until 10.00!

                                          A Chough , great to see these fabulous birds :)

There are loads of small birds up on the headland , think this might be a Meadow Pipit , but could be wrong  lol

                                     Not a clue on this one..........  hope i can id a Puffin  :D

                                                                This Is a Stonechat :)

Time to head back to catch the boat now , its getting very warm and is going to get quite hot out on the island with no shade from the sun.

 On the way , and we spot a Gannet , which apparently is quite unusual as they stay on and around Grasholm which is about 10 miles straight out to sea.   the currents are quite strong between the mainland and the island , Loads of seabirds are on the water and flying around.

                       Guillemots are all around and on the rocks as we climb off the boat :)

 After a quick talk by the rangers telling us Not to walk off the paths , as the Puffin and Manx shearwater burrows are everywhere and fragile. I have decided to walk straight to "the Wick"   which is the best area for the Puffins.  its about 20 mins fast walk i believe.

                                                                             "The Wick"

I have just arrived at the "wick"  a warden is sitting near the ropes talking to a few people, Puffins are flying all around:)
Just to the left in the above image, the path is roped off to protect the burrows which are everywhere, they are all numbered i have noticed and i can actually hear the Puffins in their burrows :)      there are quite a few all around and after a few crap shots one flies in with a beak full of sand eels :)    and i managed a few good shots   yay!

I have just spotted a Puffin with an oof  grass background. one of my intended images  Yay   little do i know that was my only chance to get the image i wanted!    the Puffin is a bit larger in the frame than i would have liked , but never mind.

Now time to get my macro lens out for some portraits , they are really close to the ropes and will easily fill the frame with my 100mm macro lens  and are uncropped on 450d body .  this one just popped its head out of a burrow and then walked out and just stood there while everyone close by took its picture :)

 I can hear them underground all along the path edge , this one just "crash" landed by me and just stood on the edge of its burrow for a few minutes before going down underground.

I have decided to go for a walk around this side of the island as its getting a bit crowded here now, so i will head to Skomer Head , one of the rangers said it is a good place to sit and have lunch without any burrows to watch out for .             

                                                            What a stunning view!!!!!!!

 After eating lunch i am making my way through to the centre of the island in hope of seeing the little owls but no sightings , but did shoot this little Wren :)

I have about an hour and half left before needing to make my way back to get the boat , so back to the "Wick" as its easily the best spot , might even try in flight shots .

                                                                    " Flapping wings "

   I  Really like this image , its been difficult shooting in the bright sun all day with Harsh light not helping, especially with the whites on the birds.

There are loads of birds on this flat area about two hundred yards from the main area where i was shooting earlier , they are flying in from the open water.  A few with sand eels in their beaks , but they are incredibly fast and almost crash land into their burrows making it very difficult to get any shots.

                                                      this Puffin is looking a bit sad :(

I have just managed another sand eel shot, the Puffins eggs have only just started hatching, later than normal so there are very few adults bringing in sand eels yet unfortunately , but managed a few images of this one ,    most i took where out of focus :(

                                              the Light is tooo bright , but its an ok shot


 i have tried my best but my canon 5d mk2 autofocus is no good for this type of fast moving subject!

 Time to go now, i have 25 minutes to get to the other end of the island. lovely views as i walk across the island.

Having made my way back to the boat landing i can rest now and just watch the birds flying around the landing area.

 i shoot this while waiting :)

                                                              Threes a crowd here :)

         As i am climbing down to the boat , i notice that the Razorbills are roosting just above the steps and i manage a few shots before having to continue downwards . They are Very majestic/impressive birds.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my 5 hours on the island , managed some really nice images and was great to finally see the Puffins :)    the wind is getting up now and it will be a bit of a rough 15 minute journey back to the mainland.

Having left the boat , one last shot as the "Dale Princess" leaves to return to the island to pick up the next party.

                         Back to see Jan and the dogs now , and a trip to a beach this evening.