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Scottish Highlands in Winter.

The title says it all, snow, snow, snow, or so you hope!

I had headed up to Scotland a few days early for the Scottish Highlands trip I was running for Nature's Images with Neil McIntyre because it had been a few years since I had been up there and I wanted to make sure I knew what I was doing.

My idea was to spend some time with the Mt hares, ptarmigan and Neil’s red squirrels. I managed two out of the three but severe winds kept me away from the high tops so ptarmigan were of the agenda.

Unfortunately, even though we were predicted with the beast from the east, there was a bit of a lack of snow initially so the first few days were difficult in terms of classic snowy images.

Once the beast arrived, and a bit of a dab squib it was, we at least had snow in some places and too much on Cairngorm, so yet again ptarmigan and snow bunts were not an option.

Weather is the great leveller, yet it also provides those magical moments such as on our last day at Alvie with a spectacular snow storm and red deer.

I always analyse each trip I do, I suspect that I over do this a bit too much as I often revisit each decision and consider if I made the right one.

Hindsight is fantastic but my crystal ball still refuses to give it to me! Saying this on a trip with 5 or 6 target species it is only luck that will allow a full contingent to become fantastic images and this time we had some luck but the snow played its part too, opening up opportunities, but closing others. In such cases the character of the group as a whole becomes important, and on this trip I couldn’t have asked for a better group, thanks to one and all.