Monday, 29 June 2015

Tory Island Beckons (Part 1)

I was still in bed when I received a phone call from Chris, my friend who lives in Donegal to tell me the ferryman had decided to take us over to Tory Island that day.  The ferry left at 11.00am and I now had to repack and make a 11/2 hour journey to Magheroarty Pier to catch the ferry.  No time was wasted and I was thrilled that I was going to have 1 night on Tory Island to explore.  Only Chris came as the rest of the group had made other plans by now.


Chris and myself arrived along with the King of Tory (above) and 6 other men who were here for 1 night to fix the Lighthouse.  Two of them were from New Zealand.  After leaving my luggage at the Hotel, Chris and I when out bird watching.  Today I am going to show you some scenic shots of the island to give you some idea of the landscape.


After going up to see the King at his home(below), I invite you to come with me on the route that lead me round part of the island and you will see the kind of landscape I came across.



King of Tory's house.

Tory Island, also known as Toraigh Island, has been populated for nearly four thousand years, since the time of the Neolithic farmers. This tiny, barren land mass is situated nine miles off the shore of Ireland’s northern peninsulas. It is about three miles wide and one mile long.



There are very few small trees or shrubs on the island and the ones that are there have heavy foliage on them so the birds are not easily seen.  Some of the trees were behind the houses and we found Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler with Swallows flying around.  There were quite a number of Corncrack calling around this area and quite a number of tree Sparrows.


In the far off distance is the only Lighthouse on the island and the 6 men had been taken up there as soon as we landed to start the work.  On Wednesday I will show you many more shots of the Lighthouse.


There was a huge area where gulls were nesting and we looked for a good while to see how many the Little Gull were nesting however we only saw one pair but an Islander called Anton who studies the birds told me later that he had seen 12 pairs which was better news.


 There were quite a number of Ringed Plover.







There are quite a number of seats by the roadside to rest on.


This is the view from the seat.


Come on we still have quite a bit to walk.




This hut/studio belonged to Arthur Derek Hill, CBE, HRHA (6 December 1916 – 30 July 2000) who was an English portrait and landscape painter long resident in Ireland. CLICK HERE for more infomation.




We are nearing the hotel again but not 
before we pass the only round tower still standing in Ireland.




The belfry in An Baile Thiar is the most impressive structure to have survived the destruction of the monastery. Built of granite, in the sixth century the tower is 15.7m in circumference and 12.8m in height. St. Colm Cille's Bell hung in the tower until the late eighteenth century when the cornice was badly damaged by a bolt of lightening.


We have arrived back at the harbour just opposite the hotel.



Tory harbour.



I decided to walk toward the East Town 
and this is the small school above and the only shop below.




The Torpedo 
A torpedo can be seen midway between West and East Town. It washed ashore during World War II and was defused and erected at its present location.


Ah!  Now this is rush hour on Tory Island!


Don’t think this boat would be very safe in water anymore.


This is one of the RC shrine with a Herring Gull on top.


I will leave you there today with this little chap which is at the beginning of the East Town. 
I don’t know who put him there or what his purpose is. 
He was not there last year.

I hope you enjoyed coming with me and I thank you for joining me.

Tomorrow, I will show you the birds I came across and were able to photograph.

Many thanks for visiting my post and 
also to those who leave comments.

31 comments:

  1. A beautiful place, but I suspect there aren't many places outside to shelter from the wind - and I bet when it blows it really blows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HI Sue Yes you are quite correct. thanks for comment.

      Delete
  2. For a minute I thought this was going to be about the Houses of Parliament; then noticed it is a much better place. Looks a fascinating place to explore Margaret, very wild.
    Not sure what a Corncrack is. Is it a native to Tory Island?
    I think the last shot of the snowman is a Fishermans Shrine.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HI Keith there used to be the Corncrack birdsall over the countryside of ireland however now there are only very few such as is found up in the North of Donegal and on Tory Island. They are endeavouring to attract them back to Rathlin island and trying to improve the habit so that that happens andthere is a man called Anton on Tory who is working hard to encourage more on Tory. That is a main reasonto go to Tory in May/ June. Last year, was the first time I had ever heard a Corncrack. This year I heard many more on Tory however they are very illusive birds adn love to hide deep in nettles!!! thanks for your comment adn I hope that explains your question.

      Delete
    2. Margaret Keith is ignorant. We all know what a Corncrack is; it's a bird that's mottled brown like a female pheasant and makes a nose like a truck reversing but with more bass. Keith is southern so they call them Corncrakes. Just daft is Keith.

      Delete
  3. It looks a wonderful island. It also looks very well cared for.
    Like the potato lifter in the turning circle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HI Adrian Yes i think you would like it but you would not be able to bring your van over! Thanks for your comment.

      Delete
  4. What a fabulous place - so wild and beautifully isolated. Really enjoyed this visit.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beautiful island you have there.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow what a nice place................

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hello Margaret, what a beautiful place to visit. Thanks for sharing all the sights, I would like to explore the island too. Great series of photos. Enjoy your day and the new week ahead!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Lovely, and so thoughtful of someone to put the benches along the way.

    ReplyDelete
  9. A very interesting post and a whole new world to me.

    ReplyDelete
  10. it pays to be spontaneous!!! beautiful lighthouse!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Amazing! A place to be alone with your thoughts.
    ~

    ReplyDelete
  12. Interesting and rugged looking area, can you explain what was meant by the "King" please.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Douglas Hope this will explain who the King of Tory is. Thanks for your comment and question.

      Reflecting a long-standing tradition, a "king" is chosen by consensus of the islanders. The current Rí Thoraí (Irish for "King of Tory") is painter Patsy Dan Rodgers (Patsaí Dan Mac Ruaidhrí). The king has no formal powers, though duties include being a spokesperson for the island community and welcoming people to the island. In my opinion, he is a very good King!

      Delete
  13. Wonderful pictures--- I almost feel like I've been there. Love the path!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Beautiful scenery. Lovely images!

    ReplyDelete
  15. A very scenic spot. Look forward to next installment.

    ReplyDelete
  16. it is quite barren but nonetheless still beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  17. This place looks beautiful and at the same time somewhat desolate.

    ReplyDelete
  18. What a beautiful island!!! You were so lucky they asked you to come along with them. Thank you for sharing your wonderful photos.

    ReplyDelete
  19. It looks a little too bleak for my liking, Margaret, (I like to see trees) but I look forward to seeing the birds (and other wildlife?).

    Best wishes - - - - Richard

    ReplyDelete
  20. So many beautiful photos, Margaret! You should publish these in a book about the island.
    I saw the torpedo - that thing is huge and I am so glad it is defused :)
    Beautiful and interesting work, as always!!
    Have a Wonderful Day!
    Peace :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. This is a wonderful series of photos, and I want to thank you for loading pics big enough to really get a good view of them. I bet that was a wonderful day spent there!

    ReplyDelete
  22. That's quite a beautiful walk. I can only imagine how lovely the ocean breezes were:) What a nice trek!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Looks like a beautiful rocky place to visit. I like the stone walls, light house and the stone tower. Happy Sunday!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Rugged and windswept Margaret, but makes for great scene shooting.

    ReplyDelete