Saturday, 27 February 2010

Tempus Fugit

Slioch - Torridonian sandstone overlying Lewisian gneiss basement.
These are old rocks. In fact the shallow "valley" that you can see under the mountain so to speak, is an ancient landform that was subsequently filled with the sediment now forming the mountain and re-exposed. Uplift and erosion.

Mind bending stuff. That valley I can walk in was originally a valley millions of years ago; buried then re-exposed again.
The area I visited, and shown below, is at the bottom right of the picture

It has been a while, time to write just hasn't been available to me. Way too busy at work and I am also just starting to get to grips with taking my employers to task over the re-grading exercise which left me a grade lower than I feel is appropriate. I now have the support of my head of dept so that is promising though it will involve an awful lot of work with only limited chance of success. A lot at stake salary wise and pension wise. That is why I'm sitting here on Saturday morning putting off time till I can face wading into the pile of documents next to me

It has been a very cold winter here this year and there is still snow on the ground, albeit rather wet and slushy now. Although I live in the Highlands of Scotland I am only 74 meters above sea level and we usually don't get hit hard with snow. This year, however it started before Christmas and we had deep snow lying until well into January; this week it is back again and the roads and railways have been closed for a spell with the snow drifting in strong winds. Good weather for staying in I suppose.
Last weekend, however, was beautiful; cold and dry with all day sunshine so I went out west for field trip looking at the ancient basement metamorphic rocks which underly the Torridonian sandstone mountains of this area at Loch Maree.

Dark hornblende gneiss of igneous origin.
This rock forms a dyke like structure cutting through a more typical foliated gneiss as shown in the next photograph.

This gneiss shows obvious banding and the rock is shown in the same orientation as you would have seen it in the field.
It is a spectacular area, full of wildlife and amazing mountain scenery. At this time of year I had it almost all to myself. A brief window of fine weather in amongst the long spell of bad weather and difficult driving conditions. A gift to be out there. Wish I was there now!
Well I must go - think I'll take a break and start work after lunch and keep going till tea time. You can tell I am keen, it is like starting to study for exams. Only I'm getting too old for it these days. I need my weekend to recover and re-connect with who I am.

One good thing for anyone reading my posts though is I have been too pre-occupied to write any poetry!! Could always post some of my old stuff I suppose. Only kidding.

Take care out there and have fun whenever the opportunity comes your way.

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