Scotland 2015: Day 14

I prefer writing these posts at night but I have been off cycle and posting in the mornings because the hotel had no Internet and the hot-spot I rented is garbage… But hey bacon and eggs and haggis always starts the day out right!
Is it just me or does everything in Scotland look like a Destroyer from Star Wars?
It started pouring rain- again – but another pretty castle. Pink, but not too pink. Castle #39 – Fyvie Castle.
The rain stopped and this street sign tempts me. What the hell is on the Castle Trail?  But NO – I will stay on my list! I have prints to photograph!
This next one is special because it is one of my prints. The problem is that this looks like a wheat field not a tourist attraction.
Oh look – tracks left by a tractor. I’m sure they won’t be muddy and the wheat isn’t covered with fresh rainwater! Sarcasm there. It is gorgeous and sunny and wet and muddy out there.
This castle took forever to get to. But TADA: Inchdrewer Castle – just like the print! Castle #40 – Print #6.  Seriously, this is a ruin of a castle in the MIDDLE of an active working farm.  I didn’t see anyone because that’s how big farms are. So my options are: the public roads, the private roads, the tractor paths, and right across the fields.  The fields have crops so I can’t just go anyway I want to. And since they are muddy I am going carefully up and down these paths hoping to get the right angle. I got lucky.
I’m pretty covered in mud with little to no way of cleaning up. What is worse is that I can’t tell if I’m not going to get just as muddy at the next place. The adventure continues! Thank God it stopped raining or I never would have been able to march across those fields.
Back down the single lane dirt road.
I’m trying to find Boyne Castle. I stopped in a town where I thought it was and asked some guy. I am one lucky guy because he just happens to know all about it. He tells me that I am in the wrong spot and that there is no way to see any of it from any road but to get in my car and follow him. And then he shows me this path – can you see the path?
It’s where the 4 foot tall plants are only 3 feet tall. Like the last one I’m feeling blessed that it is plants and not livestock and I start hacking my way in.
Thank goodness for my ballet classes. This is a lot of delicate jumping and balancing.
And through…
I really hacked through the brush and trees and I finally came across the ruin. You can barely see what is in the print…
Look at the second tower from the left. I am in the right spot!!! Boyne Castle. Castle #41 – Print #7.
Such a nightmare to get to, but so much fun to photograph.
These pictures are all with my iPhone! And look – blue skies!
I don’t selfie too often – even though I had just shaved. I wanted to demonstrate the height of the plants that I was slashing through.  Someone should yell “Stay out of the tall grass!” This is the part of the adventure that I really live for. A single shoot like this can make my entire trip! Then a black cloud started to roll in and I realized if I didn’t get back before it started to rain that I was going to get stuck. As it was I had to boot-scoot a few times to get down a wet hillside. I made it to the car and within seconds it started to downpour. #IamIndianaJones
Just an FYI: Boyne Castle is in this satellite image – dead center. You see it? Exactly. You might if you look close enough, but it isn’t obvious. That’s how overgrown it is and there is no clear visible path. And I didn’t find this satellite image until AFTER the trip by using the GPS coordinate from my iPhone which I only got from having gone there.
Better yet – here is the satellite image with the waterways overlaid. Makes it even trickier to find a path! Hidden dangers abound.
On my way to the next location. Look another bridge. Actually, the Cullen Viaduct – Historic #9.
Spynie Palace. Castle #42 – Print #8 – nailed this one!
For those that like heights. 🙂 It looks like I used a drone but they have a great tower you can climb at the palace!
Spynie Palace. Same castle – second print – Print #9. Apparently, and not related to the castle, Macbeth killed Duncan somewhere near here.

And speaking (or not speaking of Macbeth).

Trying to find the right spot for this one – another impossible rendering – Church #13. Elgin Cathedral.
The lady in the Cathedral shop points out that the arch in my drawing is still standing and directed me way across the street. Funny what else you can see and how badly draw the arch is – it is the wrong shape! She also showed me several other bad drawings that they had of the cathedral in the gift shop. But they also had teddy bears dressed as monks!
This place deserves some pretty shots too.
More Memento Mori.
This view, even though the arch is missing, is the closest. Print #10 – Elgin Cathedral.
Not only has the Pluscarden Abbey been rebuilt/restored over the years but it is now surrounded by trees! When I showed up the sun was in the worst possible place. Didn’t matter because the view was IMPOSSIBLE to shoot!
So much has changed!
I did get a couple of good shots with the real camera. It took forever as I waited for the sun to dip behind a cloud or I snuck into the shade. Not the exact POV – which is part of what happens – Church #14 – Print #16. Pluscarden Abbey.
A strange mix of era and styles Castle #43 – Brodie Castle.
The print  looks nothing like the castle! That’s because Brodie Castle was completely renovated in the mid 1800s! Print #12.
I found a place to stay and, instead of having Chinese delivered, I went and got some salmon and stuff from the grocery store. Saw this and thought of my brother Brian and his love for Bearnaise.
I could have eaten the entire thing. But I was good and ate a ton of custard instead!
Feeling productive, 2 weeks done and I’m up to 12 prints!
Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 14
Prints: 12
Castles: 43
Churches: 14
Historic: 9
Nature: 9
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 14: Fyvie to Auldearn
Map Week 2: