Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Visit to MacDuff and Troup Head

As the sun was still shining, Jane and I head to the Moray Firth coast for a change of scenery, the following day. The seascapes as we drove along the coastal trail east were beautiful. We stopped and had an early lunch at the Cornerstone Restaurant in MacDuff. It is close to the Maritime museum and does excellent food. After lunch we drove east out of MacDuff through the harbour area marvelling at the fishing boats, but thinking that if we were enjoying seeing them it meant they were not fishing! We drove to the end of the road where the open air swimming pool used to be and found some wonderful rock formations.
Later we drove past Crovie and out to Troop Head. We parked at the RSPB Reserve car park and enjoyed the walk out to the cliffs listening to the sounds of the seabirds. It is a fairly steep climb up behind the cliff face to get to the best vantage point for viewing the birds An RSPB warden was on the cliffs with her telescope and was delighted to tell us about the different birds we could see as well as setting up the telescope for us to get close up views of some of the chicks. We saw gannets and chicks, kittiwake and chicks, guillemot and chicks and razorbills. We were lucky enough to see a passing Great Skua who was on the hunt for eggs or unguarded chicks. The highlight of the day was on our walk back to the car, we saw 3 puffins. Jane had never seen seabirds nesting on cliffs before and had for a long time wanted to see puffins so we were thrilled.

There is a lot to explore in the whole of this area including Gardestown, Crovie and Pennan, but it was Wimbledon on the TV so we decided to rush back to catch the end of it!
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