But Hirta and the old village awaited us. Landing was relatively easy at the pier. The energetic ones explored the area of An Lag above the village and viewed the dramatic cliffs of Conachair -- over 1,300 feet high -- and Oiseval from The Gap, with a splendid view across to Boreray and its Stacs and of the hundreds of fulmars nesting on the cliffs. Others were guided round the village with Andy Robinson, the Nature Reserve Warden, visiting the restored kirk and school room, the feather store-being repaired by a National Trust Working Party -- and the restored cottages, learning en route something of the history of human occupation of the island.
With sadness we had to leave it all at mid-day. But all were thankful for the fine weather and the opportunity it had afforded us: some for an ambition fulfilled-to see St. Kilda, let alone land on it; others for the shear joy of being there again; all for the opportunity to experience the magic of these remote and enigmatic islands.