Tag Archives: County Mayo

Wild New Year 3rd January

Every new year we have a sort of family tradition to go to the beach. Ross Beach on the north-west coast of County Mayo is one of our favourites. It was a bit dull and damp. Wind and rain were forecast for later in the day and as you can see from the photograph below, the sea was already displaying some impressive waves.

Waves

I took some photographs of some of the sea birdlife as I continue with my 12 days of Christmas wild things. The oystercatchers seemed undisturbed by the wave crashing behind them.

Oystercatchers

There were also some delicate sanderling. You wonder how such small, beautiful birds can withstand the Atlantic storms, but these are obviously tough little things. They are winter visitors to Ireland and most are of Siberian origin.

Sanderling

And finally some Brent geese (light or pale-bellied). I love seeing these winter visitors from high-Arctic Canada. They were drinking some fresh water that was coming over the sand from a small stream.

Brent geese, Brent geese
Branta bernicla hrota

A lovely, exhilarating day.

Lens-Artists Challenge #175 – Follow Your Bliss

Over the weekend we got the chance to go for a walk and visit Lough Conn. The winter light, the water, the reflections were just perfect for a blissful couple of hours with the camera.

Lough Conn

Inspired by this week’s Lens Artist Challenge – Follow your bliss

Tuscan blue

The Belmullet Peninsula on the west of Ireland may not be Tuscany, but under the sun it can be a little bit of paradise too. We had the chance to enjoy a sunny Sunday there recently.

The Peninsula lies on the north western tip of County Mayo, and is part of the Wild Atlantic Way.

Farming and fishing are important. And while there are quite a lot of houses many are holiday homes.

There are many long and sandy beaches to explore……………………….

Plenty of water to have some fun in.

……………..with only a few islands between you and the wide Atlantic ocean.

Stunning scenery all around.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #102: A Quiet Moment

This walk is part of the Croagh Patrick Heritage Trail. Croagh Patrick is a pilgrim mountain here in County Mayo climbed every year by thousands of pilgrims. This Heritage Trial though is a much quieter place and the day I walk this bit of it, I had the whole place to my self.

Part of the walk winds it’s way though a lovely hazel woodland.

Here there is plenty time to take a quiet moment to enjoy the wonderful flowers.

Bugle
Orchid

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #92 – Going Back – the Second Time Around

We visited The Burren in County Clare last August. If I was to return I would go in early spring to see the famed spring flowers. The late summer flowers were stunning but when botanists speak of The Burren they talk about the spring flowers particularly.

Another place I would love to return to is Clare Island. We visited in January 2018, but if I was to return I would go in the early summer to see the wildflowers and nesting sea birds.

One day, when we are back to some form of normality, we will again visit the many amazing places we can find in Ireland.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day

The 17th March is Saint Patrick’s Day in Ireland. Usually we would be celebrating our day with Saint Patrick’s day parades – instead everything has been cancelled in the chaos that is Corvid-19. It feels very surreal but all too real. Schools are closed and all activities and events are off. Like many families we are in self-imposed isolation, only going out to stock up on food.

Still it is Saint Patrick’s day and I feel the need to celebrate Ireland. So I have chosen the chaos of our Atlantic coast to share with you. Stay safe and well everyone.

My first few choices is the very appropriate Down Patrick Head, on the north west coast of Ireland. A wild and beautiful place.

And to end a sunshine one. Stay positive and hopeful, the sun will shine again.