Friday, 19 January 2018

Drastic Plastic

This image of a Scapa Flow beach is deceptive for recent research has shown that the levels of microplastic pollution here in Orkney are on the same scale as that on the shores of industrial areas along the Clyde and Forth. Read on the BBC website about the studies made by a team from Heriot-Watt University.

Scottish Islands Explorer - a paper-product that's mailed in plastic
Digital Edition: apparently transmitted without material content

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Life & Death on Barra

The magazine, Hidden Europe, considers places throughout the continent. One of its editors, Nicky Gardner has spent some weeks on Barra and here is her second letter from a currently weather-beaten island near the foot of the Outer Hebrides. The first featured Birds on Atlantic Shores.

Scottish Islands Explorer - very much alive and kicking
Digital Edition: supplies not weather-affected

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Winter in the Hebrides

Here's the West Beach of Berneray with the Hills of Harris beyond. It appears in a fine compilation of photographs presented by Julian Paren as an invitation to Winter in the Hebrides using the Gatliff Hostels. They never close; you have little to lose!

Scottish Islands Explorer - recommends plenty to enjoy out-of-season
Digital Edition: also open day and night

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Six Generations On

Back in 1837 - that's 180 years and some six generations ago - the population of Ulva, off Mull, was 600. It was at the height of a kelp boom. Then things declined and much has gone down ever since, with just six residents there today. It's been in the news with the proposed buyout - see Ulva Issues - but some people will just continue to make the occasional visit, enjoy the views of the islands to the south from the now derelict village of Ormaig and be reminded of its connections with the development of Australia.

Scottish Islands Explorer - exists in the present; dwells on the past ...
Digital Edition: ... looks to the future

Monday, 15 January 2018

A Top Whisky

Muckle Flugga Whisky is a single malt distilled in Speyside and taken close to the islet after which it is named. It remains there - perhaps in this shed that's part of the old shore station of the lighthouse on Unst, Shetland and 'winters over'

during a 12-month stay before being returned to its mainland distillery for bottling. The islet that supports the Muckle Flugga lighthouse is within yards of the most northerly outcrop of the British Isles, Out Stack. Acquire a bottle through the Master of Malt website without having to travel to the end of the country.

Scottish Islands Explorer - goes to the ultimate for interests and imbibing
Digital Edition: just goes to the ends of the Earth

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Creating Links

Eilean Dhomhnaill in Loch Olabhat, North  Uist, was linked by a manmade causeway, to create a crannog. These existed from the Iron Age to extend and protect settlements. Now the island of North Uist could become a hub as a spaceport  for launching satellites and spacecraft. Read about the early proposals on the BBC website. Here are different ways of extending influence.

Scottish Islands Explorer - creates links wherever possible
Digital Edition: a revolutionary method

Saturday, 13 January 2018

A Moving Experience

At least Door Holm, Shetland, remained stable despite the heavy seas. Crossing to the Northern Isles by ship can, however, be a moving experience. However, the turbulence recorded featured here by CCTV cameras could have been taken from many ferries in the world. It has been suggested that this is from New Zealand. Any suggestions?

Scottish Islands Explorer - has avoided such incidents, thankfully
Digital Edition: travels by air-waves

Friday, 12 January 2018

Skye Design

For an inspirational visit to a website, access Rural Design Architects based on the Isle of Skye. The views of the properties and their vicinities are breathtaking.

Scottish Islands Explorer - takes in all sorts of views
Digital Edition: also guided by state-of-the-art technology

Thursday, 11 January 2018

The Scottish Show 2018

The entrance to the London gallery of Panter & Hall in Pall Mall is certainly clear and The Scottish Show 2018 will be taking place there from 29 January - 16 February. The pastel on paper - Haar Lifting - by Matthew Draper will be on sale and despite the mist, there is no prize for being able to identify the island depicted.

Scottish Islands Explorer - has been represented at the gallery
Digital Edition: one of its features is clarity

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Go Back to Sulasgeir

There is plenty of life - of the avian variety - on Sulasgeir, but men are just occasional visitors and women are rarely seen there, except when a film-crew is present. However, there's a chance for many to return in the next four weeks, through BBC iPlayer and the availability of last night's programme on BBC Alba.

Scottish Islands Explorer - here's a place explored by few
Digital Edition: the bird population would show no interest