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Wirral Members Meeting - Part Deux - Three members head for the Wirral
The day started for me at about 8.30 when Ian (Digicammad) turned up to collect me at home. He had already pre programmed the GPS in his ever so lovely car, to get us to Dee Lane, West Kirby. Funny thing is, there was a road block, and the GPS crashed so out came my trusty A-Z to find us an alternative route, lol.
We arrived at the Supermarket car park at the end of Dee Lane, and the Spikey Haired Love God himself (Mattwaggie) was already there. (Made a lovely change from the last Wirral Meeting). We hung around looking suspicious for about 20 minutes, but sadly, nobody else showed up. So, we paid our Pay and Display money, locked the cars, and started out towards Little Eye. This was going to be my new cameras first outing, so I was very excited.
Hilbre Island actually has 2 satellite islands. Little Eye and Middle Eye. To safely traverse the 2 ½ miles out to Hilbre Island, you must head for Little Eye first, turn right, get Middle Eye onto your left side, and head towards Hilbre Island proper. Trouble is, I got Middle Eye onto our right, oops. It did lead to some funny walking, slippy rocks, and some interesting rock formations though, so worth it in the end.
|Left: The long walk out to the island.
Right: Fun at the beach.
We eventually reached Hilbre Island itself, after about a 40 minute walk. There was a lot of scientific equipment dotted around, and oddly, some private dwellings. There are 3 or 4 private houses, and an old pub (alcohol is long gone). We headed towards the back end of the island. I spotted Ian setting up a lovely looking shot. He found an old iron ring embedded into the rock. He stood it up to make a more "dynamic" looking image. Stepped back, camera to eye, and the ring fell over, lol. The look on his face was priceless, but he got his shot in the end.
|Got it, it stayed up this time.||I don't believe it!!! It fell over|
Matt and I headed for the old Lifeguard boathouse right at the back. Nice fireplace. We did notice there were lots of little areas of fresh brickwork, and little bridges, created to make travel on the island easier, but we also believe it held the island together too. Here we decided to have a wee break, drink and something to eat. The wind was getting up so I opted to put my jumper on, phew, chilly.
Matt and Anthony contemplating life, the universe
and everything photographic.
||Anthony and Ian, hungry for seal.|
Next, we made for the shoreline at the end of the boathouse run, and watched for seals. The whole situation felt a bit like that chocolate biscuit advert, where the mand is waiting with his camera for the panda bear, and as soon as he turns his back, the animal appeared. Well, we waited and waited, and our luck held out, off in the distance was a little black spec. Through the viewfinder of my Z1, we knew they were the seals. After another wait with baited breath, they did start to come a little closer, but not so close that any of us got any worthwhile shots.
The decision was made to start making a slow start back towards some lovely sail boats we had passed on the way in. We chatted and snapped for a wee while, on our way to the boats. Matt and Ian headed across the little estuary towards "Jade", while I headed further down the shoreline, looking for interesting details on the floor. There were mussels and cockles all over the place, literally 10's of thousands of the blighters! At one point I turned around at saw Ian waving frantically for me to get out of the way, whoops, I had wandered into Matt's shot. Sorry for that mate.
Left: I think this guy chased the seals away, ha ha.
Right: Jade (the Boat) and Middle eye, just after Anthony got out
We joined up again about 20 minutes later, and started on our way back towards Middle Eye, and then back towards West Kirby itself. We spent about 10 minutes at the Marine Lake watching the windsurfers, and small sailboats. We also all tried to get a shot of the birds as they were gliding on the wind, but mine were rubbish.
|Little Eye, the first island in the set of three.||We all tried for this shot, only Matt got it, well done.|
Back to the car park, and we all said our goodbyes. I had to get back for my daughters birthday party, so Ian very kindly dropped me off and that was that.
All in all, it was a very pleasant couple of hours, although my sunburn is still glowing and I can do a good impersonation of a lobster, lol.
Thank you for coming Matt and Ian, it was great to meet you both again, and spend some time in your company.