Join me for a three day winter wildlife photography tour in the Scottish Highlands.  It includes four nights accommodation in my on-site self-catering cabin The Drey Inchberry


This tour is available December 2022 - March 2023 (except 20 Dec 2022-7 Jan 2023).  It is limited to one - two people allowing for a greater flexibility in subject and tuition (if required).   

Crestie in the Snow

Winter is, without a doubt, my favourite season for wildlife photography in the Scottish Highlands.  Not only is the light nice, but there's a chance of snow and species not seen at other times of year.  Plus red squirrels have their adorable tufts and the mountain hares are white!

Red Squirrel, Cairngorm National Park

Unlike many of the other Highland winter wildlife photography tours that you can book, this one is limited to one - two people and provides self-catering accommodation in my open plan cabin The Drey Inchberry which sits next to my house.  This allows for a greater degree of flexibility, one-to-one attention from myself and opportunities to photograph in locations where taking a larger group is unsuitable.

When enquiring please do let me know what your target species are.  Because it's a small group we can build the itinerary around your  wish list where possible.  Do note though that weather can influence the species we are able to photograph.


An example itinerary would be:

Day 1: Arrive from 4pm

Day 2: Red squirrels and red kites.  Evening pine martens

Day 3: Red Deer, red grouse and Snow Bunting in the Cairngorm National Park

Day 4: Crested Tits and woodland birds.

Day 5: depart by 10am



WEATHER

Unfortunately it's impossible to guarantee snow. During winter 2021/22 the Scottish Highlands were often one of the mildest places in the UK and suffered from gales and heavy rain rather than frost and snow!  However the wildlife is still wonderful, whatever the weather and our itinerary will be flexible so that we can work with what the weather gods throw at us.

Young Red Deer Stag in Falling Snow

Wildlife


Red Squirrels (exclusive hide in deciduous woodland)

Crested Tits (exclusive hide in pine woodland with chance of squirrels, long-tailed tits and other woodland birds)

Red Deer

Snow Bunting

Red Grouse

Mountain Hares (depends on hare numbers)

Red Kites

Coastal Waders

Pine Martens (lit hide, evenings only, available until approx 5 March), chance of badger too.

I don't guide for ptarmigan, but if this is something you are interested in I could put you in touch with another guide if you would like to stay an extra night and add this to your tour. Weather can be an issue for ptarmigan though as strong winds/ice/deep snow can prevent trips up the mountain).

Red Kite

Requirements


FITNESS

With the exception of mountain hares, there are only short walks to our subjects although it may be over uneven ground.  Some degree of fitness is therefore required.  We will also be standing for long periods or sitting on the ground (a chair can be provided if required).


CLOTHING

We will be outside for much of the tour so very warm clothing and waterproofs are essential.  Sitting for extended periods outside even if the temperature feels relatively mild can get very cold.   Multiple layers are best and I can highly recommend a heated waistcoat and either battery powered heated socks/gloves or disposable hand/foot warmers - they make a huge difference!!

Footwear should be warm, waterproof and comfortable.  If you are travelling by car I'd recommend walking boots and wellies as the ground can be very wet at times.


EQUIPMENT

Camera body (bridge or greater) with a telephoto/prime lens with a max focal distance of at least 300mm. Ideally a lens between 400-600mm is best for most subjects but isn't essential. Some of our photography will be in woodland and the light can be poor, so a fast lens is useful too. If we do pine martens they come very close so a fast lens with a focal distance of 100-300mm is required.  And, if you like landscapes then please bring a lens for that as well.  If you'd like more help re. equipment to bring I'm happy to talk to you about it before your visit.


I tend not to use tripods very often but they can be useful in some situations.  I have a couple of spares plus a monopod available if required. Beanbags can also be helpful.

Binoculars are great for seeing more distant animals and birds.

Walking poles if you are unsteady or lacking confidence walking over uneven ground.

A seating pad is great too.  When we are at the red squirrel site I will provide a couple of mats to sit on (or chairs if preferred) but in other situations you may find a pad helpful especially if the ground is cold or wet.


Red Grouse

Accommodation - The Drey Inchberry


You'll be staying in my self-catering cabin, The Drey, which is next to my house.  The cabin is open plan and has 2 European single beds (200mm in length) and these can be pushed together to create a super king.   There's a mini kitchen with combi-microwave, fridge/freezer and sink, as well as a shower room with electric shower.   The cabin is very well insulated and comfortable even on the coldest of nights.

For more information on The Drey please visit its website - www.thedreyinchberry.co.uk

The cabin (and my house) are five miles West of Inverness overlooking the Beauly Firth and Ben Wyvis.  We are surrounded on three sides by fields and woodland.  It's a very pretty location!

Please note the cabin has no wi-fi although 4G works to some extent inside (better outside).  Nor is there a TV, however there are plenty of nature books to read.

Untitled photo

Price


These prices are based on 4 nights accommodation and 3 days of photography.  Extra nights of accommodation are available at £75 per night (2 people), £50 per night (1 person).


2 People: £1600  (£800pp)

1 Person: £900


A 25% non-refunable deposit is required at time of booking, the balance to be settled six weeks in advance.


Check cabin availability for your preferred nights here.

  • Workshop Booking Request Form

    To inquire about a workshop please complete the form below
  • Please complete all the fields. If you are flexible about when you'd like to do the workshop then add this information in the "Other Information" box.

    If you wish to do a residential workshop, please check the availability page on The Drey Inchberry website to ensure those dates are free.

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