Little natural arch
Mini natural arch on the Ness of Tarbert

How long did it take for nature to create this tiny sandstone arch? 

All that is needed is the wind and water and a bit of time. I can’t put my new ‘go pro’ camera up on time-lapse to capture the making. I think I will be go- pro-ing for a century.

close up mini natural arch

Look how vulnerable and thin this sweet mini arch is. All it needs is one clumsy foot of a distracted tourist to destroy this little work of natural beauty. Or a clumsy sheep or cow. But before that could happen, I saw this arch and took a picture. And now it survives on the internet forever….

How old the sandstone landscapes of the North East coast of Scotland are. The yellowy diagonally tilted sandstone rocks look so soft and rounded. And sometimes there is a sharp edge in the stone. A different layer of something. Could be anything. 

It makes me realize that this ancient landscape has seen more lifetimes than you and me. Sculpted by nature for ages, eroding, shifting, decaying, polishing, carved by water, sand, and wind. Worked on by man and beast for centuries. And now, it’s there for the slow traveler to notice. 

But this tiny miracle of nature is under threat. Of what?

Of people in white camper vans or normal cars driving through the ancient landscape. Looking out for a good time on their vacations. The landscape has to service their fancies. Throwing stones in the water, removing stones for campfires that are just left after a good blaze. Leaving wet toilet paper in Neolithic burial tombs. Unicorn water toys on the beaches. Cigarette buds wherever they get out of the car. Bags with dog-poo. Empty lunch wrappings.

Just left there in the landscape. And nature does its best to deal with it. Degrades plastic into small pieces by sunlight and blows it away by the wind or water. Microplastic, you just might find it back on your plate of food next time you eat your fish and chips.

Not nice to read this? Think about how the food you buy is packaged and how you dispose of the waste while on the road. Think about the environment where you spent your holiday. 

Take your rubbish home!!! Littering is so trashy!!!

Charlotte Gannet

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