Sunday 27 January 2008

Coignafearn - Valley of the Eagles


Last weekend we drove out to Coignafearn, otherwise nicknamed the "valley of the eagles", because of the eagles who nest and hunt in the valley. A beautiful magical place, much loved by bird spotters and wildlife enthusiasts. Hubby took me there in Spring when I first came to Scotland and the river was full of red deer cooling themselves. Then a year or so ago we went in summer and watched about four eagles flying around the valley.

This was the first time we've been there in winter. There was only one eagle, but loads of red deer coming down the hillsides to spend the night in the warm valley along the Findhorn River.

Here are some of the red Deer coming down the mountains. The ones higher up were too small to photograph properly.

Driving into the valley...

End of the road and pretty much the top end of the valley..

Driving back out the valley..


  1. WOw, awesome scenery. Is that snow I'm seeing? Must be awfully cold out there.

  2. Michelle, these photo's are fantastic - reminds me of when I toured through the Highlands some years ago - it was sooooooo cold - I can "see" the cold in these pictures - Scotland is so rugged and harsh in some ways, but stunningly beautiful - after an outing like this all one needs to do is find a warm pub with a log fire burning... I've got a bit of catching up to do with reading all your recent posts ;-)

  3. Hi Blur

    It is snow and it was cold, but not as cold as it can get. We haven't had much snow this winter so far, but then the last two years it's mostly snowed in February. If we get good snow I'll take more photos. :-)

    Hi J

    Very true! the cold makes hot soup and a warm room feel amazingly good. My favourite place is Drumnadrochit. To stop at the hotel there with its real fire and have a big bowl of soup and a roll on a really cold day... perfect!

    How's the weather in the Cape? I hear SA has had a lot of rain this summer. We've had rain and floods here too, but mostly in England.

  4. WONDERFUL pics!!! Sounds like a GREAT time! ;-D

  5. Hi Michelle - the notorious South Easter has been blowing non-stop here for about two weeks (near gale force, 24 hours a day!)- and can it BLOW(!)it slams into the blocks of apartment buildings and houses, including my room's back wall and then howls its way through the paths of least resistance further down the mountain, with the occasional sound of trees cracking. Strangely enough I don't really mind - it shakes the windows & lifts the roof tiles (literally), but I sleep lake a babe at night ;-)

    The weather is very dramatic here - and that's what I love about it - but its calmer down in the city bowl. Been very warm lately, for the last 5 weeks or so (in-between rain storms and light floods),but every now and again we have a cool night or morning. Besides the "Cape Doctor" the mountain's forever moving white fleece "cloth" floats across the "table top" from where it creates itself out of thin air and disappears into nothing again on the other side. You've got to love it!! :-D

    (Have you heard about the 500 people who were stuck on top of the mountain and inside cable cars last week, due to a major power cut? Eventually they got the cable cars going but many had to overnight on the mountain... and the power failures have been continuing on average for two hours a say - we've been told to get used to it, so I've stocked up on candles... all part of the adventure :-)) Jacques

  6. Hi J

    Sounds like you're enjoying your latest adventures down South. East London used to get pretty windy too.

    We've had a few gales, but nothing compared to what we got in the Eastern Cape.

    Wow, that about the cable cars being stuck without power is horrifying (if your like me and not keen on them in the first place!)

    I keep thinking how lucky my family is that this wasn't happening tens years back. Ten years ago my gran was on an oxygen machine (electric) at home. We did have one big power out (49 hours) where we had to dash back and forth getting bottled oxygen from the clinic, because each bottle only lasted 2-4 hours. Having to go through that daily would be hell.



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