Local Patch - Shetland - (III) Sumburgh Head

This is the third of three posts about my local patches at the south end of Shetland.  

Part One was all about Scat Ness, Part Two about Quendale Beach and this one is about Sumburgh Head.

I've taken a lot of photographs on Shetland. Actually that's probably an understatement, but the first one was taken on the coast near the Sumburgh Hotel on Saturday 27th January 2007 - and the main feature in that picture was Sumburgh Head.   I certainly had no idea quite how much time I would spend at Sumburgh Head over the next eleven and a half years.

Sumburgh Head - an RSPB Reserve and more recently with a fabulous Shetland Amenity Trust visitor centre - has become one of the places I visit regularly when I'm on Shetland. Very regularly.  If I look back through my photo records I do wind up visiting Sumburgh Head almost every day when I'm on Shetland - sometimes twice and occasionally more.

This is true at anytime of the year - from braving the winter storms in January and December, through the early spring reappearance of the guillemots and the excitement (usually in April) of seeing the puffins return.  In both the spring and autumn Sumburgh is a prime stopping point for passing migrants and almost anything can and does turn up.  

In the middle of summer I'll stare hopefully over the walls in the hope of glimpsing one of the passing orcas, in the middle of winter I'll cling to the walls in the hope of not being blown over the cliff edge.

Over the years Sumburgh Head has changed.  There are certainly more fulmar now than before, but sadly fewer puffins and many fewer kittiwakes.  And there's now a visitor centre - I was worried that the centre would spoil the sense of wildness.  Sumburgh Head has successfully retained it's sense of wildness but with an added sense of heritage and history, and a fabulous little cafe.  

And toilets. :-)

January 2007
February 2016
March 2011
April 2015
May 2011
June 2018
July 2017
August 2017
September 2012
October 2010
November 2017
December 2013

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