Western Isles – Butt of Lewis

Butt of Lewis, Isle of Lewis, Scotland

Photo: Coastal rocks, Butt of Lewis, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Jan 2011

I don’t really know why, but for some reason I was under the impression that the Butt of Lewis was not a very interesting place.  I guess it is probably a often visited tourist location, being one of those furthest, highest, most, lowest, type place.  In the case of the Butt of Lewis, its the northern most point of the Outer Hebrides.

There’s not really much there.  An old 1860’s lighthouse, some cliffs, and a few birds; maybe even some puffins in summer.  Oh, and there’s wind.  Yep that should be on the list.  I don’t think there’s ever a shortage of wind in this part of the world, being the first piece of land any weather hits arriving from the arctic.  I should probably also add rain to the list as well.  So for a place that’s seems relatively boring on paper, and with bad weather, I found it totally awesome.

I think it helps that I arrived in perfect conditions for the mood of the location.  Had I been there on some calm, sunny summer day I’m not sure I would have walked away with the same impression.  Or had there been mist and haze, I may have hopped back in the car without the camera ever exiting the backpack.  But I was lucky.  January winds whipped the sea into a fury.  Rain arrived, then passed with enough time in-between to get some work done.  I could find sheltered areas, probably a bit close to the cliffs, where my tripod would remain mostly still.  As the short winter day faded towards night, I think I saw this place in it’s raw, natural state.  Cold, harsh, barren, empty, isolated, dark.  Yet amazingly beautiful.

Butt of Lewis lighthouse, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland

Photo: Butt of Lewis lighthouse, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Jan 2011

Rough seas break on rugged coast at Butt of Lewis, isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland

Photo: Coastal rocks, Butt of Lewis, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Jan 2011

Butt of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland

Photo: Panoramic of Butt of Lewis, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Jan 2011

Butt of Lewis lighthouse on cliffs above stormy sea, Butt of Lewis, Isle of Lewis, Western Isles, Scotland

Photo: Stormy seas crash below Butt of Lewis lighthouse, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Jan 2011

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