Chris Mills of Norfolk Birding has just returned from an Islay trip. Earlier today he shared some very nice Golden Eagle pictures on Twitter. For those who missed them or are not on Twitter here they are (click on the pictures for larger versions):
Excellent pictures I’m sure you’ll agree. Well done, Chris!
Time for a bit of virtual exercise. And may be it can inspire you to complete the short walk out to Carraig Fhada lighthouse (weather permitting, don’t attempt this walk in a storm…) next time you’re in Port Ellen? Enjoy the video:
OK, it’s not really that fast, it’s a timelapse video. But if you’re in a hurry and would like to see how a passage through the Sound of Islay looks this video should be just right for you. Let Jake take you through the Sound on the NLV Pharos:
That is all, I’m afraid.
No, I don’t know if their pizza oven will be peat fired. I don’t even know when it will open. All I know is that (hopefully soon) a new pizzeria will open on Islay. In Shore Street in Bowmore to be precise, in the building that most recently housed the Holy Coo restaurant.
To be updated about their progress you have a number of options: To start with there’s the Peatzeria – A Slice of Islay website (a holding page as of writing this). Then there’s the Peatzeria Islay Twitter account. And finally there’s the Peatzeria Facebook page. If that isn’t enough I don’t know.
As of now building work is progressing nicely:
If it’s open by the time of my next Islay visit in April I will report back with my impressions then, otherwise after another visit later in the year.
I’ve heard of various ways to get across the North Channel from Islay to Ireland (or vice versa). By plane. By boat (mainly RIB). By Laser sailing dinghy. By kayak. By stand up paddle board. I don’t think I’ve heard of swimming before. That might be about to change:
I don’t know more than is mentioned in the blog post New Swimspiration, The Celtic Quadrant (and the links posted there) I came across today. Of the four swims included in the quadrant one is the following:
The Oa Channel Swim, a 45 km 6-person relay between the Isle of Islay and Ireland in 11°C to 13°C water at £200 per swimmer with a window between 15–20 July 2017 with an estimated time of 18+ hours for crossing.
Certainly sounds like quite a challenge to me…
The BBC reports of an initiative by Lagavulin distillery to support two local projects as part of their 200 year anniversary celebrations. The two projects are a long standing one and a fairly new but very important one: Finlaggan and Islay Heritage. There will also be further local initiatives receiving support:
The Lagavulin 200 Legacy is set to make further contributions to the local swimming pool, cyber cafe and arts and festival organisations, as well as a new partnership with the RSPB to restore and conserve peatlands on the island.
Funds will be raised through sales of special single cask charity bottling.
After a few videos after relaunching the blog something for the ears only tonight with two slightly older radio programmes previously broadcasted on BBC Radio 4. At least as of today they can still be listened to on BBC iPlayer Radio:
The first one is with Malcolm Ogilvie, well known to many Islay visitors, who has been studying and watching birds and in particular Geese on Islay for decades. The programme is 22 minutes long and called The Living World – Islay Birds.
The second one is by writer Paul Evans and sound recordist Chris Watson who recorded the 30 minutes long programme Nature, The Sounds of Britain, Islay. Among other things Paul talks about the Adders in the airport car park, I remember those signs. Of course Adders don’t make much sound (apart from possibly hissing), so wait for the Corncrakes, Curlews and other birds, just to start with.
An interesting read in The Drinks Business: Islay Distillers: A Singular Vision. With pictures from Konrad Borkowski.
The old IslayBlog.com also still exists, you can find it at www.islayblog.com where it will be “retired”.
I’m only just setting up the blog, so obviously not much is happening here just yet. More to come soon.