Autumn Begins

Man looking across the Sound to SkyeAutumn begins for me with the first day on which the stags roar. Because the wind is nearly always in the west, and because the fences keep the bulk of the stags to the higher ground above Camusfeàrna, behind the low mass of littoral hills, I hear them first on the steep slopes of Skye across the Sound, a wild, haunting primordial sound. . . Often the approaching fall comes with a night frost and clear, sharp blue days, with the bracken turning red, the rowan berries already scarlet, and the ground hardening underfoot. . .

— Gavin Maxwell, Ring of Bright Water, 1960
Photo by Samuel Spicer

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