Today we had a very useful meeting with Howard Towll from Shetland Amenity Trust. Howard is a ranger who knows the islands inside out – the geography, geology, natural heritage and basically everything we needed to know. The main thing we need help with is identifying the walks that will form the basis of our project.
The concept underlying this new collaboration is a response to the Shetland Landscape. We mean to do this by plotting a number of walks across the landscape, documenting sounds and images along the way. We have decided to focus on the Westside, due to its proximity to Scalloway as well as fulfilling the criteria of being able to get out of range of roads (traffic noises), biodiversity and wildlife. Nearly everywhere in Shetland could boast of all three things, but the western mainland, apart from being close to where we are, is famous for its spectacular scenery and is quite a large area with few roads and an abundance of destinations to choose from. We could quite easily spend more than the next month going for a different walk every day, so we will have to be selective! Howard helped us choose what he recommended as the best, but we still have a list of 15 when all we need is 5! He also gave me some tips about local flora to look out for and recommended a book about Shetland wildflowers that I now have in my possession.
So we are all set to start tomorrow with Walk #1!
On the way home from from Aith we stopped off at the side of the road to capture some late evening panoramic shots and there was the most extraordinary sound of birds coming from the fields below. I had to stop and record them. Only trouble was the traffic… I managed to capture a couple of minutes sans cars. Will post tomorrow morning…