Friday, September 20, 2013

Random Photos from Ireland

The Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland

Wooden grave marker in Ballinskelligs, Ireland

The magical king of Dun a Ri Forest

A river along the Ring of Kerry

Dunluce Castle in Northern Ireland

Monday, September 16, 2013

Florida Cinnamon Black Bear in the Scrub

We had a cinnamon bear visit us this evening. Florida black bears are not typically cinnamon, so this one was a surprise! His half-black, half-cinnamon coat was beautiful.

Bear Planking

Giant's Causeway, Bushmills N. Ireland

The Giant's Causeway must be the most popular tourist attraction along the coast of Northern Ireland. Just a short drive away, Dunluce Castle was completely our own, but here countless curiosity seekers scrambled over the rocks like happy ants.  It helps to be patient here as you wait for a tourist-free photograph. In the meantime, enjoy the interlocked basalt columns that betray an ancient volcanic past. These are not basalt crystals but the result of constrained cooling, just as mud cools and fractures into geometric patterns.
As always, if you are able, please take the leisurely stroll to the site rather than the shuttle bus. You will be rewarded with beautiful overviews and an appreciation of the entire site.

The basalt columns comprise the dark point of land in the middle of the photo




A single stone on the Giant's Causeway

Saturday, September 14, 2013

The Steps of Skellig Michael, County Kerry Ireland

Skellig Michael is a stunning 6th century monastery built precariously on top of an island off the coast of county Kerry. Due to the boat trip it takes to travel there and the impossible staircase to the top, this place is truly otherworldly. The sightlines on the trip up and down make you feel like you are flying over the cold sea. If you ever have the chance to visit and you are capable of climbing 600+ steps, you should take the opportunity to experience this ancient wonder.

The graceful curve of steps leading to the summit of Skellig Michael



The beehive monastery huts