Monday, 24 September 2012
Looking upon Graemsay.....
This photo was NOT taken by me (!) but is from the top of Ward Hill on Hoy. You can see Graemsay in the top of the photo and Hoy High lighthouse. The photo was taken by John Aberdein, a local writer (among other accomplishments) who lives on Hoy. He has climbed Ward Hill many times. He kindly said I could use this photo that I saw on his Facebook page. I hope he doesn't mind me using his description of it either.
"It's the top of Ward Hill, Hoy, the biggest bump in Orkney. Only 1500 feet, so a flea-bite compared to the Cairngorms, which "brought me up", as it were. The rock is shattered by gale and frost so it's an arctic-alpine environment.
The Ward Hill's mountain hare in its whiteness is the largest native mammal in Orkney. There used to be red deer, but only because they were imported. They cleared crofters to the shore, built two shooting lodges, imported deer from Scotland, and advertised for toffs with guns. Then they dealt with the deer problem.
The view is looking across to Graemsay and mainland Orkney, with the Atlantic out west to the left and Scapa Flow, the largest enclosed area of sea in the world after Pearl Harbour, stretching to the right."