"Day light was still upon us and heat of around 14 degrees C at 2200 last night, so I got itchy, you know the itch where you wanna get out, you want to just take the rifle and disappear from everyones life for a few hours into you own world in which you are the boss of the top of the food chain. So that what I did.
My permission is around 50 miles drive away from me at the other side of the Loch Ness from where I stay so I get to see a lot of wildlife before I get there.
Packing up the truck I had a feeling someone or something was watching my every move, you know that paranoid feeling you get?, well I was when I turnedto look at the garage light there perched in front of my side door to the garage was a nosey begger of an owl. Finished of getting ready kissed my beautiful wife goodbye and good night and jumped into the truck heading for a night of bliss.
I got about 7 miles down the road to Loch Tarff where my second encounter happened, Loch Tarff and Glen Doe are famous for their red deer during all the season you see the deer there and within picture distance for even the most useless smart phone, I came across a herd of around 50 stags grazing by the side of the road between me and the waters edge (about 30 feet), I pulled up beside and put down the window and had a moment just me and the lads, their velvet very apparent in the dusk coating their half grown head dress.
A little time later I got to Drumandrochit and picked up my lamping buddy and very good friend and preceded to the permission, for about two hours we toured the hill ground looking for any signs of Charlie. The night was warm with the dew apparent in the lamp beam but no sign of any life other than a very very young bunny and a lost yearling doe whistling for any sign of its mother trapped behind the plantations fence. After while without seeing anything we decided to call it a night for now and I took my buddy home and grabbed a coffee at his.
Upon leaving his I headed back to my permission for another wander but this time on foot (my companion is not much of a walker) I went to lower half of the permission and sat and awaited for first light. Dawn broke with the usual hilarities and majestic sounds so I took some recordings. A group of Does but no bucks grazing on the neighbours property so I wandered the lower fields and made my way back to the truck. Took a wee photo of the rifle on the bonnet of the truck and then left for the night.
Driving home disaster struck the truck died completely stranding me in Fort Augustus over 10 miles from home . after a while tryying to ponder the problem my amazing wife calls to find out where I am so I told her my issues, well after some deliberation and the fact that my wife would have to wake four babies up and get them ready to come pick me up I decided to down my two rifles (in their slips) my rucksack (packed with every essential but unfortunately no water) my binos (not leaving them in the car ) FAC in pocket and attempted the long walk home, the walk home starts with a near verticle climb for about 3 miles up Glendoe. Absolutely sodden with sweat and starting to get exhausted after lack of sleep and a lot of previous walking and by now around 6am I got to the top of the Glendoe, no cars had been on the road but I heard one coming at speed and low and behold to my rescue came my wifes car, the most amazing sight I have seen her beautiful long hair and disapproving glance told me that she loves me so much.
The much needed rest in the car was a god send , the journey home was lovely with the grace of a stag or two but the beautiful sight of Black Cock Lechting topped the morning well off for me and the mrs. Anyways what a night.
here are some recordings