Monday, 18 June 2012

To the Farnes.

Last week I headed back to Northumberland, after a few weeks in Cumbria, and a campus more dead than a graveyard, it was needed. After seeing everyone back at home, it was time to grab some sleep and up early the following morning for the drive to the Farnes. Sleep never happened, done more tossing and turning than a horse with colic. However, the alarm clock rang, and I was ready within a minute. Cain arrived, and in the car we went. Along the coastal road, the sea looked a bit rough, but nothing too bad, just a bit choppy. However when we arrived at the booking point, we were told that the first trip of the day had been canceled because of the sea, Staple Island is said to be unsafe to land on in choppy waters, no worries though, the boat trip to Inner was still on, and also saved a tenna! Wondered around Seahouses for a bit of food, then moved on to another location around the area while waiting on afternoon trip to arrive. after a number of attempts to find the Beadnell Tern colonies, we finally walked across the sand dunes to a small hut around the banks of Beadnell Bay, Arctic Terns swamped the skies, one of the guys patrolling the site mentioned something about the Little Terns, and being not quite with it yet (legs were awake, brain was still trying to awake, and at one point my eyes were trying to get some REM) what he said went in one ear and out the other.

Got back to the Seahouses, and walked over to the booking point, the area was like walking around Aladdins cave for a camera man. Half of the owners of these cameras and lenses were old, I reckon if i did happen to accidentally snatch and grab, I would be back in Newbiggin by the time then they turned there false hips around to notice. 
So the booking lady, directed us down the harbour, and to our vessel of the day, Glad Tidings. The amount of people waiting to board the boat looked like a scene out of Titanic, and at one point this was after the boat sank. People just hanging from the steps, little old women inches from the water, and the skipper of the boat shouting at everyone, because the majority of people must of left there brains in the cars. After a good 15 mins watching the comical boarding the boat, we were aboard and off the the Farnes. the sea had calmed down a tad. On the boat there were good views of Bamburgh Castle and happily watched a Gannet fly by. 

As we arrived to Inner Farnes, we circled around and the amount of birds on the island was unbelievable. Puffins, Terns, Shags, Kittywakes, Razorbills, Guillemots... QUALITY.

As we landed on the island we gave our entry fees, and off we walked up. 

As we walked up, it was like experiencing World War 1, except instead of dive bombing planes, it was dive bombing Terns. 

Frightened to look up incase i had an eye removed, quickly moved to the top of the hill, thinking that the blitz would be over, however, World War 2 was quickly about to start. An amazing experience. The amount of birds, so close. Puffins could be seen landing, bills full of food, and scurrying in to their burrows, quickly evading the gulls ready to tackle them for the free fish supper. 

As i walked around the pathway to on end of the island many other birds could be seen nesting on the cliff face.

After moving around the island, i decided to walk around the old church, hiding from the Terns, they were on top form.

The 3 hours on the island flew by, we were back on the boat and heading back to the shore. Fantastic day, and a deffo return in the next 3-4 weeks. 

I spent the remainder of the day at home debating whether to return to Cumbria or not. so by 10oclock pm i was packed and driving back to happy human free Newton Rigg Campus. 

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