Still Watching the Waves

Last winter, while I was travelling, I did a Saturday post each week to let anyway who was interested find out what I'd been doing when I didn't need to be based in the south of England.  The blog is still there if you want to go and have a look at it.

Having spent a splendid day watching boats and waves around the southern end of Shetland, I felt inclined to  generate another short post about this Saturday - maybe I'm doing this because I had intended to get on with some writing projects this weekend.  I just hadn't reckoned on the weather.

I sat at Aberdeen airport yesterday morning watching the dark clouds overhead, and made the mistake of looking at the weather forecast for Shetland. It assured me that the rain would be starting about the time I was due to get to Shetland, was going to carry on pretty much relentlessly for the next three days.

Remind me to get a better weather forecast next time.

The shone brightly yesterday, and with the exception of one shower last night the skies were clear. Clear enough to remind me just how many stars are visible when you get away from the city lights. This morning the  skies were pretty clear again, a picture from Lerwick harbour is an indication of the cloud cover.

Ocean Researcher in Lerwick Harbour
Scalloway Castle
Having convinced myself that it was sunny in Lerwick I headed from the modern capital of Shetland to the old capital at Scalloway.  Still sunny. Still blue skies.

So back down to the south end of Shetland.  There is a little harbour at Grutness, but there isn't usually anything there - unless the Good Shepherd IV from Fair Isle is around.

What there often is at the south end are great waves.  These can be particularly dramatic when the wind is from the southwest (which it was), and there is bright sunshine around (where there was).

Breaking Waves at Quendale Bay
One of the interesting quirks of travel around Shetland is the runway extension that was built in the late 80s. Not only is there a level-crossing set of gates where the main road crosses the runway, I'm told there is only one other airport in the world that has this.  The other quirk is that when the wind is from the southwest the waves break over the western end of the runway.

Waves breaking over the runway at Sumburgh.

And my one mistake this weekend - other than reading the weather forecast. I really should have realised that I was going to need sunglasses. On Shetland. In November.

BTW. There are a few more pictures from today on Shetland on Flickr

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