Elgol Beach


I left the Sligachan Hotel slightly reluctantly, and with no idea of where I was heading next. I knew I wanted to spend a second and final night on the Isle of Skye, so it was really a matter of finding a decent location for my next photograph.

I jumped back in the van and, before beginning the search, decided what I really fancied was a leisurely drive round the beautiful island.

Along my drive, completely by chance, I happened upon a sign for a photography gallery, so in I went and met Russell Sherwood at his Skyscape Gallery. I was there for nearly an hour, admiring his photographs and discussing photography, the Isle of Skye, the merit of mirrorless cameras for landscape, filters, and just about everything else. You can take a look at Russell’s photography on his Facebook page.

Russell is a photographer who seriously knows his locations and where’s best at different times of the year. His recommendation was Elgol, a very small seaside village of around 150 people at the end of a mini epic drive down some of the most scenic roads yet.

It’s a nice beach at Elgo, but I was starting to question his recommendation, until I turned the corner round the cliffs and discovered one of the most epic locations I’ve ever seen. It’s a photographer’s dream – an immense section of rocks jutting into the sea against the backdrop of a series of mountain ranges. Seriously, Elgol is one hell of a location for landscape photographers – I could have stayed there for weeks.

In particular, are two mountain peaks which could have made for a particularly dramatic photograph, but the conditions were calm and muted, and I just couldn’t get it work. So, like the night before, I put my camera away and just sat on the rocks for a while, admiring the scenery and letting the atmosphere soak in.

Here’s the resulting photograph, a long exposure to match the more subdued, calm conditions. For me, this is a tranquil photograph but with an element of unseen, unknown danger, which really matched the sense of the place on that evening, with the waterline getting higher, the light levels getting lower, and a long and potentially hazardous trek back along the very sharp and slippery rocks to the comfort and safety of the van.

This was my last photograph for a few days. The next day, I would leave Skye, driving north and spending the evening in my second most favourite overnight location of the trip, a large, enclosed area of grassland overlooking the sea and mountains, with no other human in sight.

The evening after that, I would shoot the most technically challenging photograph I’ll probably ever take, and my favourite photograph of the whole trip.

This is photo 8 of 10 from my 2017 Scotland trip.


Part of the Everywhere else collection.

Share this page