JUST COLOURFUL SHEEP

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These are just a few captures of sheep with – it seemed to me – extra vibrant colourful identification markings.  Perhaps they were just freshly done. They came bounding over to the gate as we passed. Sheep don’t often do that, but perhaps they had recently been getting some kind of feed over the gate from the farmer, so they thought it was lunchtime!

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In this shot above I would have preferred it if that sheep in the foreground had turned to the camera. Animals can be quite tricky like this. Just as you are ready to press the button they turn away!!

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Thanks so much for viewing

https://www.helene-brennan.com/c101-animals–birds-and-other-nature-photos

A WINTER WALK

Some photos from a walk in the Mount Brandon vicinity last December. I didn’t get round to posting them earlier because I didn’t know the name of the townland – still don’t know, but I thought it worth showing these photos anyway. This path leads to one of the routes for ascending the mountain. I didnt get many photos mainly due to poor weather, but a few minutes of light gave some nice views, looking back from start of the mountain path.

Thanks so much for looking.

WILD ATLANTIC WALK

These photos were taken from Clogher Beach and the cliff walk to Cuas na nEighe from the beach. This is the place for massive, wild and wonderful waves, where many people – photographers and others go to capture the Atlantic wildness, or just to observe and enjoy it.

This rock above can send the most enormous splash way up to the sky. Photographers love to catch this moment. It always happens just when you take your eye off the ball, in a manner of speaking. I’ve seen some arrive with their tripods and camera pointed at the rock, ready for the event, and not being side-tracked by any of the lovely dancing light on the spray etc. They leave as soon as they capture it. Nothing else matters.

If you follow my posts you would have seen many other photos from this place, but as I often say, it changes every day, with the wind and the light.

Lace-like patterns swoosh towards the beach.

The island above right is Inis Tuaisceart, one of the Blasket Island group, commonly known as The Sleeping Giant, or locally known as Fear Marbh (Dead Man). It appears in many of my photos and paintings.

The Island in the distance above is another Blasket Island, the Tiaracht. It resembles the Great Skellig Rock, near the Iveragh Peninsula of South Kerry. Many people get confused with it,

I love these dancing shapes riding on top of the water, with the spray flying in the wind.

The next six images are from Cuas na nEighe, one of the most wild and wonderful places on the Dingle Peninsula, in my view.

At Cuas na nEighe, with Sybil Head in view.

These big splashes are so irresistable.

On the return towards Clogher Beach.

I hope you enjoy these coastal pics.

More Clogher Beach and Cosán na nEighe images

Thanks so much for visiting.

TRIP TO THE LOCAL

A trip to the local would normally mean to the local pub here, but with all the pubs still closed, now it’s a trip to the local beach! Much more healthy of course. This is another look at Béal Bán (White Mouth) Beach in Ballyferriter, on the Dingle Peninsula. My followers may remember several views from here in the past. I don’t like to go for a walk without my camera, so hopefully these photos are sufficiently different from previous versions.

I have a new camera for these past couple of months and I’ve recently realised that the date in the camera is in 2028! I thought I had re-set it but apparently not. Only discovered that after serious delving into why Google refused to publish a photo. They were unable to tell me why, but eventually I worked it out for myself. There are just too many photos taken now to change all the dates in, so hopefully these images don’t cause too much of a problem.

I never tire of watching the waves and capturing them.

Carraig Dubh (Black Rock) is the name of this rock – I’m told. I have been given other information, but I’ll go with the first.

It was quite a dull afternoon with glimpses of bright sunlight and dark shadows.

I find many of the normally sandy beaches here have a lot of stones on them recently, as the sand appears to have been dragged out with the storms. I hope the sand comes back with more storms. It does come and go a lot.

These birds were enjoying some quiet down time until I came along – they weren’t long moving.

Winter sea swimming has become so popular these days. They say it does wonders for your health. I’m not convinced.

Doubt if they expected waves this size!

Oops – they’re gone! They did re-appear.

Mount Brandon with a bright fluffy hat.

These cows were quietly enjoying the view over the sea.

I hope you enjoyed this trip to the local with me. These and many other photos of this beach and other local trips in the Ballyferriter area can be seen on this link:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/ballyferriter

MOUNT EAGLE – TO THE TOP

Although I often take a short walk up Mount Eagle, for a little cardiovascular workout, it was some time since my last walk to the top. It can be very wet and waterlogged in winter time. But recently on a beautiful sunny Sunday I finally managed to get to the top again. I particularly wanted to get some new photos of the views from the top.

I was a little disappointed with the quality of the light, considering it started off very sunny and clear, but the views were starting to look a little dull and with a slight haze. I was aware that I have many better photos than these views of the Blasket Islands.

Great Blasket Island is the largest of this island group, is not only of interest because of its wild life and scenic beauty, but is also famous for the many acclaimed writers who emerged from the vibrant community of people who once lived there (until 1953) . Their written accounts of life on the island are now considered to be classics of literature, and there are translations of these books in many countries of the world.

As the path wound around to reveal the views at the other side of the mountain I was dismayed to see the reason for the lack of light – gorse fires! They were all over the place, with thick smoke hanging about all over the landscape. This didn’t bode well for views from the top. It was February 28th, the last legal date this year for farmers to burn the gorse, and being a dry sunny day – they went mad at it.

In this view showing Mount Brandon in the distance, I had to work at editing some detail into the picture.

Mount Eagle Lough, is the lake seen here. There is a path up the mountain from the lake which I have taken previously, but this was not the path taken on this occasion.

Finally, at the top, with very hazy views of the Blasket Islands, and the Skellig Rocks not visible through the veil of smoke.

I did what I could with the available views before setting off down again.

On the way down the sun had moved over the islands, giving some pleasing images.

The following photos were taken on previous trips, some of which had better visibility.

These two older images are of the Skellig Rocks, from the top of Mount Eagle, which, because of smoke, could not be seen on my recent walk. They are closer to the next Peninsula, the Iveragh Peninsula of South Kerry. The large rock on the right is Skellig Michael, on which there is an ancient monastic settlement, with several beehive shaped stone huts, built by the monks who lived there in harsh isolation from about the 6th century AD, to about the 13th century. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and very popular with tourists – even more so since being used as a Star Wars film location. There is some information on this link below:

https://aleteia.org/2017/12/13/luke-skywalkers-beehive-huts-and-their-spiritual-symbolism/

Below is a clearer view of the Blasket Islands from the top.

Gorse fires on an earler occasion, when strong winds prevented the smoke from settling low. The fire services are regularly called out to control these fires.

How different things can look when the light is good!

Mount Eagle is 516 meters high – a very enjoyable walk on a nice day, if the path is not too soggy or flooded. Good boots are essential.

Thanks for visiting. Do come back, please.

I have several more photos taken from Mount Eagle, in different light, at different times of the year, on my website:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/mount+eagle

TRÁBEG, KINARD, KERRY

These photos are from Trábeg Strand, a small and often dramatic wild beach in the Kinard West area on the south side of the Dingle Peninsula.

It’s pot luck whether you get any sunshine when you go out for a walk here, and after a promising start to the morning, the sky clouded over before getting there.😕

This is also one of those wild places to which photographers are drawn for those really turbulent sea images. This was not the best day for that, with the swells of last night’s gales already dying down.

Not to be deterred, I thought, I’m here now so I’ll make the best of it. I lived close to this beach many years ago, before digital photography. I haven’t been back many times since. (Wonder where all those 35mm prints are now!) 

This is the entrance to the beach. – Very stoney at the moment. In my previous life here I observed the sand come in and go out frequently with the storms. Now it appears more stoney than ever. I was also very surprised how high the water level was, considering it was only an hour away from low tide. I expected to be able to walk around the rocks to different sections of the beach at this time, but not so. A low spring tide should be ok – next time!

 

This large stack here is a very familiar landmark, which can be seen from many high places, particularly the Conor Pass road, shown below, on another day.

The sea stack is called The Searrach (Siorrach), there are often alternative name variations and spellings here. The Searrach means foal.

Every photographer who comes here wants to get a good big splash on the Searrach. I just have to be content with the stack and no big splash pictures. The water, though rough, just wasn’t quite wild enough.  Must find those old prints!

 

 

 

 

It really didn’t feel safe on the beach, you can’t trust the ocean, when it’s rough and the beach is small. We didn’t stay for long.  I’ll definitely have to go back.

For some of my images of the wider Kerry area check out this tag for Kerry Coast Images

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/kerry+coast+images

Thanks for viewing my post, and keep safe.

 

ROAD WALK VIEWS, EMLAGH TO VENTRY

This was a walk from the Emlagh area, Ballyferriter, to Ventry, via Leataoibh, on the Dingle Peninsula, It was a reasonably pleasant day with sunny spells and cloudy patches, which I think often make the landscape more interesting and photogenic.

Cruach Mharhain is the peaky mountain in these photos.  I have previously posted photos taken from a walk up this mountain, but I must have deleted that post. I had to delete several earlier posts to create more media space. I have to walk up there again some day soon, but it requires some preceeding days of dry weather, and that’s not easy to get here at this time of the year.

When walking alone I get better photos. When I walk with other people I am distracted with conversation and also I always think I am very boring as a walking companion, as I keep stopping to snap the views.  So, on this occasion I did not take many shots, and instead I have included the following six photos from the same route, on earlier dates.

 

Just a farm shed on the roadside. I would think it was probably once someone’s home, a long time ago.

 

The Three Sisters, above, a familiar sight that can be seen from many places in this area.

A quiet country road, looking back, with Mount Brandon in view.

I really liked the character of this rusty old tractor. As you can see I gave it some aging treatment.

Mount Eagle in this one above. Another one I must climb again soon – also waiting for dryer weather for this one. I often do a short walk up for some heart & lung exercise.

I liked the mossy clumps that nestled on this ailing holly bush in someone’s garden.

 

 

A view over Ventry and Dingle Bay, with the Iveragh Peninsula (South Kerry) across the bay.

 

Arriving in the Ventry area, here is Rathanane Castle, (also Rahinanne, spellings vary here) a tower house that was built by the once very powerful Fitzgerald family, way back in the 15th century. It was built on top of the remains of an ancient ringfort and souterrain.  This castle, like so many others across Ireland, was destroyed by Oliver Cromwell’s forces around 1650, when he led a band of troops through Ireland, on a very bloody campaign. (Cromwell was a British political and military leader). I read only recently that he died from complications of malaria, contracted from a mosquito bite he sustained while in Ireland.  Wonder if it was a Kerry mosquito!  I was surprised to learn that there was malaria here then.

It is posssible to walk in around the castle on payment of about a euro to the land owner. I have been in there a few years back. Two photos below are from that occasion.

It was a rather dull cloudy day, giving a menacing feel to the atmosphere.

Shortly after that we arrived at Ventry village to pick up the car we had parked there earlier, being a linear walk.

This link will take you to more photos of the Emlagh, Ballyferriter area:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/emlagh

Thank you for your visit. I hope you have enjoyed my photos.

SNOWY TOP ON MOUNT BRANDON

It was one of those cold, numb finger days, walking on the roads in the vicinity of Mount Brandon, on the Dingle Peninsula. The mountain gleamed bright white with its sugaring of snow and fleeting sunlight, and in between showers of hail I managed to get a number of shots of this lovely mountain.

This is one of the 10 highest mountains in Ireland, and the highest on the Dingle Peninsula. I find it quite majestic in appearance. Its name comes from St. Brendan the navigator, an Irish monk who lived from 484 to 577 AD, and who many believe sailed to North America in a leather boat, with a team of other monks, many years before Christopher Columbus.  According to local legend, he spent 40 days in prayer and meditation on the top of this mountain to prepare for his journey. Already an experienced sailor, he had much knowledge from his own experience and that of other sailors he met on his journeys.

His voyage was simulated by Tim Severin in 1976 and he concluded that Brendan’s successful voyage to America was not only possible but probable. (Incidentally, Tim severin who replicated other historical journeys also, sadly passed away just last December at his home in West Cork). Some more information about St. Brendan can be seen here https://www.history.com/news/did-an-irish-monk-discover-america

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This mountain can be seen from many places on the peninsula and other places also. On this tag you can see several images of the mountain, including some paintings, on my website:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/mount+brandon

Thank you for your visit. Keep well.

A SOFT DAY

A soft day here in Ireland usually means a calm grey drizzly day – or so I think that’s what it means. Someone else might tell you something different.

These photos are from one of those days – grey and dull. I didn’t even bother to bring my best camera, as I set out on my walk; the mobile phone was my only tool.

 

However, it wasn’t long before the clouds started to disperse, giving way to lovely soft atmospheric effects.

These cattle were in a field overlooking the beach, in Ballyferriter, Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry, in the South West of Ireland.

 

 

 

 

Is it a rainbow or a fogbow? It’s kind of in-between really.

 

 

 

 

To see photos and paintings of the Atlantic coast, in different weather conditions, please check out this tag on my website:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/wild+atlantic+way

Thank you so much for viewing my post. I hope you will visit again. Stay safe.

 

 

DUNQUIN VIEWS

Fluffy clouds, Dunquin. Below the horizon stands the Blasket Centre, which provides information and history about the vibrant community that once lived on Great Blasket Island, the larger island on the left, below.

Just below the Blasket Centre on the coast, this very nice new viewing platform has been built on the cliff, at a cost of €2.25million+ !!! I have heard that the rusty effect alone was a substantial part of the expense.

There are stunning views of the Blasket Island group from the Dunquin coast. This is on the Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry, South West Ireland.

More coastal views from Dunquin.

These shots were taken on Dunmore Head, which is nearest to the islands. Here there is another of those World War 2 lookout shelters, of which there are several around the coast. Unfortunately they don’t look very pretty.

An Ogham Stone stands on Dunmore Head. So named because it has some of the ancient Ogham script carved on it. Ogham is an Early Medieval alphabet used to write the early Irish language, and later the Old Irish language. (Pronounced Ohm, it has a silent G). Dingle Peninsula has a large percentage of the country’s Ogham Stones.

Couminole Beach, not very obvious here because the tide is high and the sandy area is covered over. It’s a beautiful beach for a saunter and a few photos, but not so safe. Nevertheless, my walking companions went down for a swim – yes in January! I didn’t venture down on this occasion as I was in a hurry.

The steep path to Dunquin Pier can be seen in the above photo.

I have to show these shots of this beautiful horse with his long mane!

This friend of mine, Lisa, likes to feed him daily with her vegetable peelings and give him a bit of attention, as she passes on her daily walks in Dunquin.

Lisa has named him Gruaig Fhada, which simply means Long Hair. Her own hair makes them a good match.

I have never seen a horse with such a long mane before! I assume he is a shire horse.

He is rather lovely, isn’t he?

So hard to see his dark eye in that black patch. I don’t know how he can graze with that hair in his eyes!

On my website there are many photos and a few paintings of the Dunquin area, including captures of Couminole Beach which I bypassed above:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/dunquin.

Also some animals and wildlife on this tag:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/c101-animals–birds-and-other-nature-photos

I appreciate your visit. I hope you like my views of Dunquin, do come again.