I find sunrises and sunsets fascinating. While I am less tempted to rise around 4:00am to watch the sun rise over the Isle of Mull, I find it hard to resist the draw of even the hint of a colourful sunset.

Hard to resist – Here the view from Pier road across to Ben Gott

Such is the draw that even although confronted with the challenge, “Haven’t you enough photographs of sunsets?” I find it difficult not to go for a walk. Although traditional white houses set against dark skies have their own attraction, the opportunities to capture the scene are perhaps less frequent.

Breath catching beauty

In the past week much of the UK has experienced extreme weather conditions including high temperatures, torrential downpours, and thunderstorms. Thankfully here on the Isle of Tiree we have been spared these extremes. Having said that, it has been reported that on Tuesday a hockey match on the island had to be suspended due to a downpour that seemed limited to the crofting township of Cornaig.

A brief glimpse of the setting sun through a parting in the clouds

The past few days have been a good example of our mild maritime climate. Still warm evenings have the one drawback – they encourage the small population of midges on the island to come out from their usual places of refuge and enjoy a meal at the expense of the human population.

The sun has all but dropped below the horizon

It was a hard decision. Risk the possibility of providing a free meal for midges or walk to the pier to watch the sun setting. However, fascination won over fear – the fear of being bitten. The refrain of the popular song is so true:
The midges, the midges,
I’m no gonnae kid ye’s,

The midges is really the limit,
Wi teeth like pirhanas, they drive ye bananas,
If ye let them get under yer simmit!
[For those who need a translation a ‘simmit’
is a vest.]

The raised jib of the crane towers over the old pier

Walking towards the pier it was clear there would be little sign of the sun’s golden ball dropping below the horizon. The clouds would see to that, yet the very same clouds would reflect the colours of the sun setting. Fascinating!

The crane’s jib lowered

Approaching the marshalling lanes beside the pier office it was evident that even at this late hour, around 9:30pm, they were still working on the old pier. There was the distinct sound of the rumblings of the crane which is being employed to remove the old wooden fenders in preparation to bring the pier back into operation.

An interesting section of the old wooden fenders

Due to the ongoing work access to the pier has recently been limited but on this occasion there were few restrictions. What a viewing platform to watch the bay take on the colours of the sunset.

A panoramic view of just a small part of the bay

The pier itself holds a fascination with the daily arrival and departure of the ferry. Occasionally the diminutive cruise ship the Hebridean Princess and large sailing vessels pay. a visit. Additionally the moorings in Gott Bay have attracted some from the yachting fraternity.

The safety boat sweeps in towards the slipway

Turning to walk back along the footway another sound came across the calm waters of the bay. It was the sound of the safety boat sweeping in towards the slipway. It was a great reminder of just how fascinating a walk can be at this time of day.

The sun has set and it is time to head towards home

This is ‘Life on Tiree’ fascinated once again

At sunset the moon is high in the sky