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  1. Today
  2. Dun Gearymore is similar to Dun Borrafiach in that it is a huge fortress of a broch built on high ground. A lot of the Skye brochs are quite small in comparison. There is still much to see here as well, including original stonework. There is an open chamber in the walls too, which is a nice feature of the broch. Access is the same as for the Dun Borrafiach. Park across from the church at Trumpan, walk up the single track road and follow the track marked on the map. I call it a track, but it's rather boggy and muddy in places. You can see both brochs from the track, but if the weather closes in or the fog comes down, this is one easy place to get disoriented and lost. As there are extremely hazardous cliffs along the coast, have a map and compass or GPS, always know where you are, and wear proper hill clothing and boots. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  3. Yesterday
  4. George

    Dun Viden

    Long walk this one, but worth it for the wander down Strath Naver. There isn't much of the broch left other than a pile of rubble, but the imposing feature of the defensive hill on which it was built certainly points to a military defensive structure. Looking at the ground around Dun Viden I'd guess it was once an island surrounded by either the River Naver or the sea. I parked at Skelpick and walked down the track, but I suppose you could also access it from the south by parking somewhere out of the way at Rhifail and walking from there. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  5. Last week
  6. George

    Home

    First update on my recording progress. This is the first song I've recorded with my new bass guitar. The bass makes all the difference. What I do now is record a trashy basic acoustic track with a single drum track, lay down the bass and then build the song from there. I'm posting it here because it showcases my photos.
  7. The Skye brochs are full of surprises. Some are so small it made me think the Picts were dwarves. Then there are some massive fortresses, like this one. Stonework is still standing and there is much to see, including interior and exterior walls and open chambers. Access is the same as for the Dun Gearymore. Park across from the church at Trumpan, walk up the single track road and follow the track marked on the map. I call it a track, but it's rather boggy and muddy in places. You can see both brochs from the track, but if the weather closes in or the fog comes down, this is one easy place to get disoriented and lost. As there are extremely hazardous cliffs along the coast, have a map and compass, or GPS, always know where you are, and wear proper hill clothing and boots. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  8. I've heard back from Loxley, one of the world's top print labs which is based right here in Scotland, and they tell me they can print any size, including 16:9. If the Print Labs can print 16:9 then it's the photo hosting sites like SmugMug, ShootProof and PixieSet that are holding things back by not offering 16:9 through their print fulfillment services. Perhaps I should be thinking about taking orders and arranging the prints to be produced and sent out myself. More thinking required. I love Loxley by the way, they've done a few prints for me in the past and they are excellent.
  9. I have a solution, a way forward. I have a ton of photos at 3:2 as it is only in the last 3 or 4 years that I've switched to shooting 16:9. So, my brochs library images will be offered as 16:9 royalty free digital downloads, and I can offer prints at 3:2. When I can print at 16:9 I can make the changes to the galleries then. In the meantime, I'll be stocking the prints gallery with 3:2 images. Here's one of my grey seal friends coming ashore.
  10. I'm going to find a way to print @ 16:9. I shoot 16:9, I like 16:9 and I'm only going to produce 16:9 prints. I'll keep searching until I find a solution. Here are the above photos at 16:9. I'm not going to compromise.
  11. One final example, this time Ardvreck Castle on the shores of Loch Assynt. This one was shot 3:2, I've cropped it to 2:1 and you can see them side by side. Which one would you prefer? Me? I really like the panoramic look, it's just more natural to my eye. Heck, even movies these days are panoramic. Perhaps it's time the Print Labs considered moving to 16:9.
  12. Here is another example. This is 2:1 ration, which means it is twice as wide as it is deep. If you were to buy a 16 inch print, it would be 8 inches deep. If you were to buy a 24 inch print, it would be 12 inches deep. I much prefer this to 3:2, but is that just me? The old televisions I vaguely remember were 3:2, but I haven't seen one of them in decades. Am I right in thinking 3:2 is quietly sailing into the sunset of memory? The more I look at 2:1, the more I like them. I could still shoot 16:9 and simply allow for a crop to 2:1 when composing the image. Which would you prefer?
  13. I'm still deliberating over ratios. My head hurts. I've been knocking my head against a brick wall here for days with this, but this morning I had a moment of clarity. I realised that if I were to buy prints for my wall in my house I would not buy 3:2 prints. Ideally I would want 16:9 prints, but 16:9 prints are not available because the print labs don't print them. So, if I wouldn't buy 3:2 prints, and 16:9 were not available, where did that leave me? After thinking about it all morning and all afternoon, and well into the evening, I thought I'd take a look at 2:1 and did some cropping. Here are two of my prints cropped to 2:1. Although I would prefer them 16:9, these 2:1 crops are much better than 3:2 in my opinion, much more pleasing to the eye. I could quite happily hang these on my wall. Comments?
  14. I've been shooting 16:9 for a couple of years now. The world has been 16:9 since forever. Televisions are 16:9, monitors are 16:9, phones are 16:9, and I shoot 16:9. The kids are growing up with 16:9. The whole world is 16:9 and everything looks good at 16:9. I've been producing images at 16:9 but the print labs don't print 16:9, they are still printing 3:2 and 2:1. Here is Carbisdale Castle and the Kyle of Sutherland at 16:9. I think it's a beautiful print and looks very natural at 16:9. However, my 16:9 strategy requires a rethink. I've chatted with 3 professional print labs now, 2 in the UK and 1 in the States, and 16:9 isn't happening with any of them. Dunno, the whole world is 16:9, televisions are 16:9, phones are 16:9, monitors are 16:9, cameras are shipped ready to shoot 16:9, but the print labs don't print 16:9. Someone needs to wake them up. Anyway, I've been forced to rethink my prints strategy and have no alternative but to go the 3:2 and 2:1 route, otherwise I won't be able to make panoramic prints available in the shop. Here is Carbisdale Castle, which was 16:9, cropped to 2:1. A 16x9 print won't happen, but a 16x8 print will. I'll go through my library and sort out some 2:1 prints later this week and get them uploaded to the shop.
  15. Made a pleasant change to find a broch right beside the road, with parking nearby, and easy access. Dun Feorlig was built on a rocky outcrop right on the coast, and although it is heavily overgrown with grass, stone work is evident in one or two places. You can park a few yards along the single track road and there is a gate into the field nearby allowing access to the broch site. I didn't try to climb the barbed wire fence, I found access down on the shore and climbed up. Wasn't too difficult, but you wouldn't want to slip and fall so take care. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  16. This is the grass covered interior of what's left of Dun Feorlig broch on the Isle of Skye, looking towards the Cuilin Mountains in the distance. It isn't just the field of view that made me fall in love with the lens, it's the images it produces. There are no obvious distortions, the contrasts and colours are out of this world, there is no vignetting that I can see, and the images just have a magical feel about them. The guys who designed and built this lens deserve a chocolate biscuit with their morning coffee. Good job Fuji.
  17. After a few outings, I'm now completely head over heels in love with this lens. I'm so in love with it I've promoted it to the X-Pro 3, and my 200mm has been downgraded to the X-T3. This is Dun Hallin broch in the Isle of Skye. I was standing right on the edge of the broch and just look at the field of view! I've never been a lover of wide angled lenses. Until now. I did have the 10-24mm once, but sold it because I just did not like it one little bit. Not that it wasn't any good, it was excellent, but it is not a patch on this lens. Fuji are amazing.
  18. George

    Brochs Chat

    I'm going to be revisiting quite a few brochs to get wide angled shots with my new 8-16mm lens (which I'm totally in love with).
  19. George

    Brochs Chat

    One of the Skye brochs I visited this week. This is the grass covered interior of what's left of Dun Feorlig, looking towards the Cuilin Mountains in the distance.
  20. Here's where I was this morning, enjoying the sunrise before breakfast. It's getting to that time of year again when sunrises and sunsets get exciting.
  21. George

    2021

    Was over on Skye again yesterday, broch hunting, and had an excellent day. There is a broch up on that fortress looking hill behind the car called Dun Garsin.
  22. Earlier
  23. George

    Achnagoul Broch

    A lintelled entrance and a few exterior stones poke through a grassy mound, which makes this a rather interesting grassy mound, as far as grassy mounds go. Access to the broch is straightforward, walking up a track and closing a couple of gates behind you, but parking is far from straightforward. I found a place on the verge a couple of hundred yards along the single track road, but you may have to find somewhere more suitable and walk back along the road to the track. The track leads to two private dwellings, so please respect their privacy. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  24. This is another of the Strath of Kildonan brochs, and if you didn't know what you were looking for, you would probably walk past it without noticing the site. It is completely robbed and overgrown, though the walls can still be made out as circular mounds covered in heather and grass. From the top of the broch, you would have been able to see both the Suisgill and Carn Nam Buth brochs. There appears to be a break in the chain between this broch and the brochs further down the Strath, which would suggest there are brochs in the Strath I've yet to discover. More than likely there is one across the River Helmsdale, up the hill from Learable. Difficult access here if you park beside the bridge on the single track road through the Strath of Kildonan and try to clamber up the steep, rocky banks of the burn. The ground is rough and boggy, with closely growing forestry conifers surrounded by high deer fences. It would be much better to park beside the Carn Nam Buth broch further up the strath and follow the pylons and deer fence from there. Also, take your map as the broch is practically invisible until you're almost on top of it. The pylons are a great marker to help you find it. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  25. The broch sits on a rocky outcrop overlooking the village of Hallin on the Isle of Skye. It commands a good view over the Atlantic Ocean and I'm pretty sure all the brochs, cairns and duns on the island were at one time connected by line of sight. There is plenty to see of the broch as well, with exterior and interior walls still standing, and there is even an original chamber in the walls you can climb down into. I parked outside one of the churches in Hallin and walked up the single track road that leads to Geary. You can see the broch on the rocky outcrop but there are stone dykes to negotiate. Thankfully, there are gates through the dykes farther up the road, so take your time and plan your route. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  26. Dun Telve and Dun Trodden are unrivalled for the degree to which they survive and are two of the best preserved brochs in Scotland. Architectural details abound, including scarcements which would have supported timber floors and possibly even the roof, intra-mural passageways, chambers, and stairs. Although smaller, Dun Troddan is probably the best preserved of the two. It's well off the beaten track so allow plenty of time for travel, and take great care in winter as roads are steep and if it's icy you could find yourself in difficulties without a decent 4x4. Take the single track road from Shiel Bridge to Glen Elg and make sure you have a map and know where you're going. The broch is right beside the road, and if weather conditions are good, it's a great place for the family as long as children are kept under strict supervision. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  27. George

    Dun Telve Broch

    Dun Telve and Dun Trodden are unrivalled for the degree to which they survive and are two of the best preserved brochs in Scotland. Architectural details abound, including scarcements which would have supported timber floors and possibly even the roof, intra-mural passageways, chambers, and stairs. It's well off the beaten track so allow plenty of time for travel, and take great care in winter as roads are steep and if it's icy you could find yourself in difficulties without a decent 4x4. Take the single track road from Shiel Bridge to Glen Elg and make sure you have a map and know where you're going. The broch is right beside the road, and if weather conditions are good, it's a great place for the family as long as children are kept under strict supervision. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  28. George

    Dun Robin Broch

    Chambers and original stonework still exists and can be examined and photographed, but the broch is overgrown with gorse, fern, and trees, and the site is treacherous, with hidden holes through undergrowth into chambers and other hazards. This broch is definitely not a family outing. Not easy to find, this one. First of all, you will have to find somewhere to park on the single track road, and may have to walk a bit to the track that leads past the broch. To actually find the broch itself, best you can do is take a map with you and head off into dense pine trees in search of what is an overgrown mound of rubble. Until you're actually on top of the broch, it is unlikely you will see it. There are no paths, tracks, or signposts, and the ground is rough going. If you miss the broch, you could be in the trees for a while so don't get disorientated. If you wander too far down the hill, you will stumble onto a mountain bike trail and you will know you've gone too far. If you have GPS, use it. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
  29. A fairly well preserved broch, this one has an entrance, chambers, and stairs to the first floor gallery still in place. It commands an easily defended position above a cliff, and overlooks the Kyle of Tongue. It must have been frightening for Roman soldiers sailing around Scotland looking for somewhere to establish a beachhead only to find brochs frowning down at them everywhere they went. Take the single track road from Tongue that skirts the shores of the Kyle of Tongue, find yourself parking that doesn't block a passing place, and the broch is easily accessible from the road. The broch is built on the edge of a dangerous cliff, so take care and keep children well supervised. Reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: Some brochs were built with military defensive purpose, and as such can be situated in extremely dangerous areas, such as on the edge of cliffs and ravines. Additionally, these are Iron Age structures, most of them in ruins, and they are extremely hazardous, with crumbling stone walls and hidden chambers. Existing walls, lintels, and passages could collapse at any time. The information here is provided free but it is your responsibility to ensure its accuracy, ensure your own safety, and acquire permissions for access where necessary. Accessing brochs is done entirely at your own risk.
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