Saturday, 27 August 2016

T F I Fidra

So I had a half formed plan to swim the smallish channel (600m?) across to Fidra. On Friday the tide was out and turning about 3.37 - perfect. Well maybe. Michael was off work (my work week finished Thursday!!) and had mentioned he might be up for a run. I took my wet suit but was fairly sure the stiff breeze would put a choppy sea between me and that iconic island. I haven't purchased a floaty orange drag bag yet anyway, in which to put islanding shoes and the non-waterproof camera. 

MG was up for a run from Yellowcraigs towards NB then across the golf course and along to Aberlady. We were chatting so hard I didn't notice the miles flying by, all done at a gentle pace. Plenty Friday sunshine but a bit of a stiff breeze indeed. The water looked dark and uninviting though from certain angles it did look like a stone's throw across to Fidra. Albeit there was what looked like a strong current flowing from west to east. You might have to aim for the left and try and hit the right end as the wind blew you past Dunbar and out to sea. Maybe next time. The wetsuit remained dry. Far too many bad sea stories in the headlines currently.

this would be the start point if wind was from east

west wind start point

On the way back we saw a Speckled Wood 
and I took this drabber than drab photo of it

The sun was definitely encouraging the butterflies to come out and play but the wind meant they were all travelling past at 45mph. I had a couple of stomps into the long grass in search of treasure but they would rise into the wind and be 60 yards away in seconds. The Speckled Wood was unexpected compensation (despite the websites saying "common and widely distributed") but a couple of Small Coppers got away on the breeze - as one website says "It is a widespread species and a familiar and welcome sight for many naturalists throughout the summer months." I first noticed this variety earlier this year (have I only been mad about butterflies this year?) on the Berwick coastal path and have been trying to get a photo of one since. And I resent the suggestion the outdoors are knee deep in them and you have to trample them underfoot on every trip to the countryside. Like the alleged Common Blue they are flightly wee shits and as soon as you get within x20 zoom of them they are goodnight vienna. Due to me having the second sight (spoiler alert) I can tell you there will be a photo of one taken tomorrow. And posted here. Hurry back!

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