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Pål Hermansen - Tory Island, Ireland

August 16th, 2009 Posted in Uncategorized, Western Europe

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In Donegal, the very north-western corner of Ireland, the Island of Tory is visible as a rugged stone formation far out  in the in the wide ocean. This was my next destination. Also here, the weather was a little tricky. Rain and wind made the boat trip slightly uncomfortable, but OK, the boat at least reached the island.
I explored the island during the first afternoon and night, following the spiky and spiny rugged northern coast. Really dramatic landscapes - and weather! Sun spots and rain-showers followed each other like the teeth in a zipper during the afternoon, and offered some great opportunities for dramatically lit landscape. The night, however, was increasingly uncomfortable, with heavy rain-showers and gale!

But in the morning, the situation shortly improved . There were some sunspots, and another highlight: the corncrake! Tory is the no 1 location for this rare bird in Ireland, and I heard the characteristic sound on a couple of locations. Therefore I was encouraged to give photography a try.  So, sheltered for the wind, I found a hide in an old ruin and was suddenly happy that I had brought with me a CD-player and a CD with corncrake calls. The bird immediately came close when I played for him, and I had some very thrilling minutes when he performed at close distance - before he realized that it was nothing but fake, and left me alone…

I was supposed to leave with the boat the same morning, but no, - gale means no boat. So it was just to wait until the next day under the rainy sky – and explore the strange gaeltacht world, where English is a foreign language.

Pål Hermansen / Wild Wonders of Europe

Please note that blogs reflect our photographers' opinions and not necessarily those of the directors of Wild Wonders of Europe.

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