Having spent a good part of yesterday morning out around that area and witnessing the beauty and wildness of that part of West Cork it is easy to forget how unforgiving nature, no matter how beautiful, can be. Less than 20 yards from where this photograph was taken there is a plaque fixed to a rock where author JG Farrell was swept away by a wave during a storm 35 years ago. While I was there for only a short while yesterday morning, conditions changed from nice to nasty in only a matter of a couple of minutes with a fierce hail shower coming out of nowhere without warning.
It has all been said a thousand times before, but saying it again will do no harm. When visiting places of natural beauty especially where the sea meets the mountains, as the Scouts say "Be prepared". Situations can change almost instantaneously for several reasons. Even during the summer months vigilance is required, the author mentioned above was swept away in the month of August. Dressing appropriately and having the right gear will go along way to protecting you from the elements, we all know how changeable they can be in these parts.
I would add one thing to the scouts motto though, picked up from having been in a few hairy situations while trying to get that better view for a photograph,and that is "Be Careful". That photograph might look lovely on your wall when printed and framed but would it be worth it if things went the other way and your foot slipped on the rock, or the cloud cover didn't lift and you decided to try and make your way down anyway.
Don't get me wrong, when i was young we were given out to for being foolish enough to fall out of the tree, not for climbing it in the first place. I will still try and get closer to the edge or just that little bit higher but only while keeping in mind that I have a wife and four kids who would be pretty annoyed with me if I did anything stupid.
So for all you ramblers, hikers,climbers, nature lovers & photographers out there, please say a quiet prayer for the return of the two men, enjoy nature but MIND YOURSELVES.