Ross Beach, Northumberland
The wind whips across the wide deserted beach sending billowing curtains of fine white sand scudding towards the sea. The strand is empty but not quiet. The noise from the gale and the pounding waves ensures there is an energy about this place despite its loneliness.
I have just walked through Ross Links with its low dunes and waving seas of marram grass and am now standing on the edge of Budle Bay. To my right is Bamburg Castle, to my left Lindisfarne and in front of me, just offshore, lie the Farne Islands. This is the Northumberland Coast at its best.
The light this morning is amazing. Last nights rain has long gone leaving the sky with broken clouds and a gorgeous peachy glow. There is a look of warmth to the day, but this is deceptive. It is the last day of December and the north westerly wind which is gusting at 40mph and above is definitely not warm.
Just offshore I can see a gannet twisting and turning in the tempest, its long slender form and black wing tips clearly visible as it glides and turns, soaring up high then dropping down to swoop low over the waves. It is soon joined by a second bird and together they rise and fall in an effortless aerial display.
The deserted beach with its billowing curtains of sand is fascinating. One minute it is dark, an ocean of hard wet sand and the next minute the wind gusts and carries with it a fine layer of soft, dry, white sand, streaking its way across the darker wetter sand. It makes the beach look alive and it feels even wilder because of the conditions. It was this feeling that I wanted to capture with my image.