Monday, August 15, 2016

Cruden Bay Photoshoot - the joys of Scotland

Five minutes… that’s all it takes to be immersed in the beauty of the Scottish countryside. Heather falls like a shawl over the shoulders of mountains, flooding between the pines as the road winds along the valley floor. Cairnryan Port is left behind, to the south, and now the five hour journey to Aberdeen begins.
The 4th hole at Cruden Bay - a gem of a par three.
It’s a long drive, especially with the additional three hours from Wexford to Belfast, but this is all about the beauty of Scotland… and the convenience of having your own car. An Aer Lingus flight from Dublin to Aberdeen would have been simpler, no question, but the convenience of having your own car makes it worthwhile. Besides, I wouldn’t have fit the ladder on the plane.

This is a photography job – my first outside Ireland – and trying to figure out what to take and what not to take on the plane was doing my head in. The ferry was the obvious answer and the ladder fits easily in the car boot.
Approach to the par five 6th. Under 500 yards... but Index 1. Yep,
it's a brute to get at the green.
After the heather-strewn glens the road drops down to the ocean and Ailsa Craig makes its presence known… and that means only one thing… Turnberry is a few miles ahead. But that’s another story.

It was 7pm by the time I arrived at Cruden Bay Golf Club, north of Aberdeen, and the sun was out. I met Les Durno, the General Manager, and he took me out on the course, to the well loved 4th hole. There’s only one buggy here… for the Ranger... so do what you’re supposed to do on a golf course, and walk.
The panorama from the clubhouse bar - whets the appetite, eh!
"From June 4th we’ve had rain every day… for 66 days in a row,” he told me, pointing out the lush, silky fairways. “Golfers are complaining it’s too green!

As a photographer, I certainly wasn't.

My room for the night is at the White Horse Inn, in Balmedie, halfway between Cruden Bay and Aberdeen. The bar and restaurant are really rather chic  and funky. I’ll get a pic up on here tomorrow. For now – it’s a 5am start so I’m hitting the sack.

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