We got up very early on the final Saturday to get the 0730 ferry off North Uist and back to Skye. It was raining hard, but we didn't mind as we had been blessed with a very dry week except for the second half of Friday. Passing the old haunts of the week previously we were sad to be leaving. A new species was seen, although one we would prefer not to see - a Mink.
On the boat crossing, after having succumbed to a Calmac breakfast, we saw numerous Harbour Porpoise, as well as all the usual sea birds along with Kittiwake and Great Skua.
On the run back across to the Cairngorms, we also had sightings of distant Black Throated Diver before we dropped in to RSPB Loch Ruthven to have distant sightings of Slavonian Grebe. Sadly neither species were close enough for a decent image. We did pick up some lovely views of Curlew flying by very closely though in the grey light.
Moving on to the Caingorms we pitched up at our hotel and met up briefly with Neil McIntyre for a chat.
After a wonderful meal and pleasant evening, we left the hotel early on Sunday morning and popped down to Neils place for a pleasant couple of hours with these delightful little characters. They are now going into their summer coats, hence the 'blond' patches and loss of the ear tufts, but they are still beautiful nevertheless.
I know that there are loads of this sort of image about, but I think you can never get fed up with them.
Moving back through the estate, we found a Mistle Thrush looking a little bedraggled from the rain, but finding plenty of worms.
So many thanks to Neil for another great shoot.
We went up to the Cairngorm Ski Lift area to see what we could see, but got into the cloud before we reached the car park. This year there has been plenty of snow, and skiers and boarders were still heading up the hills on the last weekend of May.
Moving on, we headed to the Inshriach Nursery for coffee and cake. Well you are totally spoiled for cake, but the views are even better. There are a lot of feeders set up for viewing with close ups of Red Squirrel, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Siskins, Finches and Tits. Always worth a drop in if you are in the area.
With the weather not particularly brilliant, we checked out an Osprey location before setting the compass south and driving home.
Arriving back in Stratford about 7 1/2 hours later, we had completed our trip. 1770 miles and 48 mpg.
As mentioned in my last post, I will do a couple more showing the flora and landscape of North Uist. I hope you have enjoyed each day of our travels and my reports. I have tried to bring you a different range of wildlife subjects over the week.