Icebergs floating in the Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon Blocks of ice on Breiðamerkursandur beach Erg Chebbi, Ziz Valley, Sahara Venkatramana Temple

Torridon – Raw Beauty of the Scottish Highlands with Niall Benvie

Highlights include…

  • Classic Scottish mountain landscapes
  • Sea lochs and beaches
  • Detail-rich old birch and pine woodland
  • Waterfalls
  • Red deer
  • Autumn colours in the woods and on the moors
  • Picturesque villages
  • Light painting
  • “Field studio” techniques
  • Base overlooking Loch Torridon
  • Charlotte’s superb hospitality

Introduction

Torridon and adjacent areas of Wester Ross are outstanding photographic locations that encapsulate the drama of the north west Highlands of Scotland. Vigorous weather systems from the west shower the area with rainbows and heavy rain makes waterfalls and burns gush water the colour of tea. Low winter sun colours the hills with gorgeous light, by early November they may even have a first covering of snow.

This time of year the red deer are rutting and we are likely to see quite a number close-to. The old forests of pine and birch are colourful in early November, giving opportunities to produce panels of close up work. We will push the limits of the day by “painting” individual trees with torch light at dusk.

A turbulent geological past and intensive glacial activity have shaped the mountains of Torridon into some of Scotland’s most impressive. In places, they fill the sky – a little daunting perhaps – but spectacularly photogenic. Happily, most of the best views are to be had from the valleys. It is not only the mountains that impress, ancient Scots pines rise above birches clothing the lower slopes of Beinn Eighe; a superb pale quartz massif. These dense woods are extraordinarily rich in lichens, mosses, liverworts and ferns an engrossing prospect for the macro photographer.

Tuition

Our tours weave tuition into our time in the field – as much or as little as you need or want. Niall has worked in this area many times during his 21 year career, most recently (2013) on a major commission for Scottish Natural Heritage and knows the best places to head. He’s known for his systematic approach to teaching photography which is delivered as effectively in the field as in the studio.

Hospitality

We care a great deal about your comfort on our tours, choosing locations best suited to the abilities of the group. As most of the locations are relatively close to our fabulous base overlooking Loch Torridon, we can afford to take our time. Charlotte belongs to the “nothing is too much trouble” school of hospitality and is an imaginative and talented cook too (she’s a chocolatier by profession.)

Brief itinerary

For full details download the PDF trip description

Our itinerary will depend on the weather conditions but we plan to visit all the destinations described at least once. Evenings will be spent on editing, post-production (using Adobe Lightroom) and analysis – as well as enjoying a splendid meal. We will aim to catch dawn and dusk each day unless the forecast is poor and will spend the days outside in all but the worst of conditions. If we are stuck indoors, we will do a bit more editing, post-production work and have more tutorials.

Loch Clair

Get your wellies on for the very best positions along Loch Clair, reflecting Liatach and part of Beinn Eighe. This is an iconic view that is worth returning to until the light is just right and the conditions calm.

Lower Diabaig

We drive up out of Glen Torridon, taking in familiar panoramas over Loch Torridon, visit a fascinating set of falls then head over the moors before descending into Lower Diabaig. Used a location in a number of movies, the village’s setting in a secluded corner of the sea loch looks more Norwegian than Scottish.

Shieldaig

As well as the attractive village and pine-covered island, there are beautiful birch and pine forests on the slopes near by. If there haven’t been any autumn storms, we can look forward to some great colours on the trees. And if there have been, there will be some great colours on the forest floor.

Bealach na Ba

Noted as perhaps the most “exciting” drive in the UK, the steep, winding ascent of the Bealach takes us to a great viewpoint from where we can walk on the summit. Eyes forward as we drive though!

The Russell Burn, near Kishorn

Classic falls with mountain backdrop that we must take in before we ascend the Bealach.

Beaches on the Applecross peninsula

Monty Halls made his “Great Escape” BBC TV series from Sand Bay, we’ll explore others too.

Glen Grudie pine wood

Given the right light, this wood right beside the road is a great location to shoot over towards Slioch.

Included

  • 7 nights Balgy Lodge, Loch Torridon
  • All meals
  • Tuition
  • Transfers to and from Inverness airport

Complete Itinerary and Full Details

This page is only a brief summary. A complete itinerary and more details can be found in our PDF trip description
It is important that you read the full day-to-day description and further information for this holiday before making your booking.