Darkness and the Merry Dancers
In North Ronaldsay sheep have evolved to exist on a diet of seaweed; proof positive of Darwin’s theory of evolution within our lifetimes, that species evolve to adapt to their changing environment.
One particular facet of Homo Sapiens activity in Orkney becomes dormant and hibernates during the summer months, only to spring into life during the long winter nights, awakened by the call of blackened darkness. Like a clandestine collective of spies they research their targets during daylight hours. They plan and conspire by sending messages to each other on secret social media network channels.
They don’t go to bed early.
They pack tripods, cameras, communication devices, don dark coats, woolly hats and then, leaving their loved ones behind, sneak out quietly into the shadows. They shun light sources like zombies and develop cat’s eyes but with a capacity to detect feint hints of colours and patterns in the sky that others cannot see. They choose shadow-cast places away from the wind, erect tripods and catch images of flaming messages painted on dark sky horizons by extra-terrestrial entities.
The social media network connections provide a fertile hotbed of knowledge sharing. These people don’t indulge in ‘pre-loading’ as these night-clubbers need a steady hand.
Other mortals from far way places are attracted to journey to Orkney and join forces. They are attracted by pristine atmosphere free from industrial particulate and pollutants. Without large cities, motorways and other sources of light pollution.
After a night of Merry Dancers, these intrepid folk rave about their trophies.
© Author: Patrick Yamaga-White All Rights Reserved
Click here and scroll down for a list of hospitality service providers that support Aurora hunting.
Click here for a useful guide to Aurora photography.
So come to Orkney, where the nightlife is dazzling.
Images courtesy of copyright holder Eastward Guest House
Important: New Booking Arrangements
From 29 September 2016 access to Maeshowe will require bookings to be made through the Skara Brae visitor centre on the same day. Access to Skara Brae will then be facilitated for ticketholders by a shuttle bus service linked to the guided tours at Maeshowe.
There will be three tours a day at 10 AM, 12 noon and 14:00 hours for seven days a week.
The visiting centre Tormiston Mill at Maeshowe will be closed for the duration of these new temporary access requirements.
Click here for Additional information from the Maeshowe webpages.
Photograph courtesy of Charles Tate (copyright holder)
Incident Report no: 127
A polite notice was issued this morning in relation to reported congestion on the Barswick Road in South Ronaldsay.
Acting upon information received, a herd of fine-looking, well-behaved beasts were ensuring that no disorderly conduct occurred by managing a small group of human beings that had escaped on foot from a local farm. Individuals concerned were identified as four Ic1 males and one Ic1 female.
The itinerant individuals concerned appeared bewildered and embarrassed at having been caught. They soon returned to the confines of a local farm.
Polite Scotland issued a warning that coos are urged to be on the lookout for groups of itinerant humans wandering around, behaving badly and pretending that they own the place.
Future offenders may be sentenced to community milking.
The moral of this story is that happiness rules in Orkney
Clean your camera lens and charge batteries!
There is a potential advised for an aurora photography opportunity tonight from as early as 9:pm o'clock onward (2100 hours) With the provision of course that it is dark enough and if the sky remains as relatively cloud free as it is at the time of writing this (4 PM).. The following chart indicates the possibility up until 3 AM.
Click Here https://goo.gl/lfRT8w
So have good supper, get your tripod ready and find a spot with the minimum of light pollution.
Closing on September 26th Until Further Notice
Image courtesy of Stan Groundwater: copyright holder
This week, Historic Environment Scotland have announced what they describe as the temporary closure of Maeshowe in religion in relation to safety issues concerning the management of access to the site.