Monday, 14 July 2014

Roger Lever - Mingulay

If you ever get chance to visit Mingulay then take it.

A small boat leaves from the Isle of Barra daily, weather and sea conditions permitting. It is the most Southerly of the Outer Hebridean Islands, roughly one mile long and half a mile wide and is uninhabited except maybe for people working on the small NTS property and students doing Bird surveys.

I camped just off the main beach for a few days in the company of puffins, seals and the local Bonxies, the Gaelic name for the Great Skua.

It is also a good way to lose weight . If you take a few healthy eating supplies and spend a good bit of time exploring, the kilograms disappear without you realising. You can replace all those lost calories with a good old fish supper when you get back to Barra.

It also helps to have a good set of binoculars and a camera because the wildlife is pretty exceptional and you can get fairly near to most except perhaps the cliff dwellers, the guillemots and razorbills. You would need to be a mountaineer to get anywhere near these.

The puffins are the main residents on the sandy hillside overlooking the beach. One can go and sit in amongst them and be mesmerised by their behaviour and flying skills.

You could of course spend longer there if you want solitude to write a book!!

Might just try that sometime.

Roger Lever

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