The phone rang, it was my friend Tim. He works for Copeland Gin, he sounded excited and rushed. "dude I got the go ahead for a quick trip out to Copeland Island tomorrow. There is 1 extra space on the boat...you wanna come?" ... of course I did!
So the next morning there I was, in Donaghadee harbour, climbing into a very sketchy rib boat with Tim, a gent named Stephen Hill who looks after the island, a dog, the dogs owner and the owners shot gun. what are we doing I asked.
Then we were off, flat out cruising across the bay...about 5 minutes later we were there. Tim signed us up very quickly to be passengers on the official Island transport...which was basically a lawnmower with a roof super sketchy...no doors...2 wheel drive...driven by a guy I had never met before along some of the ropiest little tracks ever...It was amazing!
There are no real roads out there...more like suggested routes on where you could drive but Stephen just drove where ever he liked giving us a history lesson about the island, telling us about the bird life and the potato blight and how the island basically fed the surrounding areas during the blight.
I soon learnt that the fella and his dog were out practising to hunt, there is an abundance of rabbits on the island and they bring dogs out to teach them to hunt bird without getting distracted by rabbits...pretty clever.
What a beautiful place, so quiet, so tranquil and untouched. I was was a great opportunity that not a lot of people get to do. Thanks to Tim and Copeland Gin for giving me a shout and thanks to Stephen for taking time out of his schedule to cart us around the island. Check out the video below.