Our efforts were rewarded with spectacular views in all directions, including an intact Martello Tower, sandy beaches and numerous trails leading to different areas of the island. It was clear that the breeding season was in full swing with many gulls and chicks nesting in the open areas and on rocky ledges etc. We were lucky to spot a number of puffins both on the surface of the water and also standing guard outside their burrows. Some members ventured to explore the other side of the island containing the ruins of an 8th century church, almost inaccessible by giant ferns and long grass, adding a real sense of untouched wilderness.
During our stay on the island there was a constant stream of aircraft passing directly over our heads, as they made their final approach to Dublin Airport. Many photographers were seen pointing their long lenses skyward to capture these man-made flying machines alongside natures magnificent masters of the air.
After approx 3 hours, we made our way back to the boat staging area, where we again negotiated some tricky uneven ground to re-board our ferryboat. The sea state on our return journey was noticeably rougher, with plenty of cooling splashes for the assembled passengers. There were few complaints as the sun continued to blaze and temperatures hovered in the early twenties.
Back on dry land we adjourned to a local cafe for some welcome refreshments and chat. Overall a very enjoyable outing.
Some images (click on an image to open in full-screen mode) from the outing can be seen below: