4th May 2013 – Dotterels in Cumbria

Every time I do this climb I say it’s the last time I’ll ever do it, but there’s something extra special about seeing Dotterel at point blank range on a windswept plateau in my home county – so I keep going back for more. The wind speed on the climb today was a constant 30mph+ and it was absolutely freezing – and totally unrelenting. A few deep snow drifts were still about to add to the atmosphere, and the cloud base came down as soon as we began the climb, at times worryingly close to covering the summit plateau. It was pretty gloomy up there for sure and I had plenty of time to question my sanity on the way to the top!

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After the long hard walk it was a huge relief when Col spotted 5 birds – get in! I lay down to try to get out of the battering wind, getting pretty wet in the process, and my fingers were so cold it hurt as I tried to take some photographs. Trying to keep the camera steady was virtually impossible in these conditions, and the dull overcast conditions meant I was having to use a much slower shutter speed than I’d hoped for. But as is always the case with Dotterel, they were very tame and totally at ease with our presence, basically I just lay there and let them come to me… what a superb experience!

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Wow, what stunning birds they are, certainly one of my favourites. Soon we had to begin the equally challenging descent, but all being well I know I’ll be daft enough to do it all over again in a couple of years or so…

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5 Responses to 4th May 2013 – Dotterels in Cumbria

  1. Neil says:

    Where was this at Darren, looks fantastic.
    Turning the calendar over onto may is a great treat, what a cracking photograph

  2. Gordon says:

    What a tale, and what ‘immense’ photographs – each one a stunner!

  3. Carl Baggott says:

    Cracking shots Darren and its good to see you can still climb up there without oxygen 🙂

  4. Ian says:

    Hi Darren -always enjoy your blog.
    I went looking for them yesterday but no sign at all-were they on the summit itself or do they have “a favourite spot “-have to say it was a brilliant day weatherwise but would have swapped it to get a view of them !

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