Years ago I produced a small selection of my old photos of Scottish mountain and South-West England views for use as wallpaper (best not all at once!) on my Windows desktop, and it seemed a nice idea to share them around. They are mostly not of a quality that I myself am happy with as desktop wallpaper these days, for their deficiencies really show up on a quality modern 1280x1024 pixel monitor, but at least they are nice views.
The narrower Scottish Highland ones were actually scanned from cheap 'enprints' from transparency originals (and indeed the odd ones have survived that treatment brilliantly), while the less narrow ones were taken with a miniature Fuji digital camera, whose picture quality left a lot to be desired - particularly with regard to an excessive built-in image 'sharpening' function that actually put horrible edge effects on everything. The Alps images were scanned from excellent transparencies using a transparency scanning add-on to my otherwise excellent Epson scanner. That add-on was actually useless because it had no means to gain precise focus on the transparency, and so always produced unsharp results - a blot on the name of Epson.
Until June 2009 these were all available here as zipped low-resolution images, but I've now replaced these with 1280-pixel width non-zipped versions (about 1024 pixels in the odd case). I recommend that you set your desktop colour to black and set the images to be centred and not stretched. An excellent wallpaper auto-changing program is Walyk Wallpaper Changer, and I use that myself nowadays to give me a new wallpaper for each session, rotating through a collection of over 200 images.
These photos are for those who get a buzz from solitude and wilderness, and who find the standard range of Windows wallpapers uninspiring. For the most part they are not showy postcard shots; some of them are in more or less cloudy conditions (in the case of Liathach actually in the cloud). I expect occasionally to add to or change this selection.
For a selection of great hiking routes that have given me a tremendous buzz, go to my Selected Great Hiking Routes page...
Visit Broad Horizon Photos
A resource of photos of nature, wild scenery and various 'great outdoors' subjects to uplift and improve one's life. If you want higher-grade desktop wallpaper than is offered below (for one thing, taken with a decent camera), then Broad Horizon Photos is for you!
For a selection of great hiking routes that have given me a tremendous buzz, click here...
Don't stop at the photos!
Hear the wildness and wilderness of the Scottish Highlands in music!
|Looking across the head of Loch Shiel, from beside the Glenfinnan monument (not in this photo), towards Beinn Odhar Mhor (Easter Saturday 1979)|
|On the summit
plateau of Ben Nevis (Easter Monday 1979),
with a backdrop of the Mamores.
|Thick snow cornice at the top of Ben Nevis' 600m cliffs. (Easter Monday 1979)|
|On Beinn a' Bheithir, near the main summit, looking towards Bidean nam Bian (Glencoe); a fine sharp corrie edge in the foreground.|
|On Beinn a' Bheithir, just below Sgorr Bhan,
overlooking Loch Leven to the Ben Nevis group.
|On Beinn Alligin, on the highest of the three Horns of Alligin, overlooking the lowest of them; Liathach hazy in the background.|
|On the main summit of Beinn Alligin, overlooking the Horns of Alligin to Beinn Dearg, with the top of Beinn Eighe looming beyond; part of Liathach to the R.|
|Atmospheric conditions on Baosbheinn; the main summit to L.; Beinn Alligin partly engulfed in cloud to the right.|
|Atmospheric conditions on Baosbheinn; just south-east of the main summit, looking east-south-east; Beinn Eighe (left) and Beinn Dearg (right), both clipped by cloud.|
|Enjoy this huge drop
at your feet!
From Beinn Bhan in the Applecross group.
|The gasp view that hits you as you enter Coire Mhic Fearchair of Beinn Eighe on the Coire Dubh Mor track from Glen Torridon.|
|The grandeur of Glencoe - Diamond Buttress & the main summit of Bidean nam Bian, from the ridge leading from Stob Coire nan Lochan. Two pairs of walkers on their way up; the dog is well ahead! (Easter 1980)|
|A lochan on Ben Shieldaig, with Upper Loch Torridon beyond; Beinn Dearg & Liathach.|
|On the rugged low craggy hills by Diabaig, looking up Upper Loch Torridon, with Liathach to the left.|
|Atmospheric conditions on Liathach;
at the start of the Am Fasarinen pinnacles.
conditions on Liathach;
from the bypass track beside the Am Fasarinen pinnacles.
|Tumbling water over rock slabs in the Lairig Leacach, the highest part of the Grey Corries beyond. Atmospheric conditions.|
|On the upper north ridge of Stob Ban in the Mamores, the summit rising to the left. Bidean nam Bian in the distance is framed by the 'V' of the ridge. (Easter 1980)|
North Cornwall Coast
Point, near Morwenstow -
a headland just like a good mountain ridge.
|Looking south-west from Chipman point, near Dizzard - a formidable challenge for the walker, with a series of steep-sided valleys to cross.|
|Cambeak, a headland just like a miniature mountain with wonderfully contorted rock formations, connected to the mainland by an extremely narrow and exposed ridge - near Crackington Haven.|
|Another view of Cambeak|
|Buckator & Gull Rock, near Boscastle.|
|Near Boscastle - South-west from Penally Hill, over Penally Head and the mouth of Boscastle Harbour. It is April, with a mass of blackthorn (white) and gorse (yellow) in flower.|
|Near Boscastle - over the chasm of Eastern Blackapit to the mouth of Boscastle Harbour and Penally Head|
|Ladies' Window, between Boscastle and Tintagel|
|Between Boscastle and Tintagel - looking NNE, over the mouth of Rocky Valley to Long Island|
Cornwall Coast around Land's End peninsula
|Rounded boulders of granite forming the beach at St Loy's Cove, with Boscawen Point beyond.|
|Overlooking the sandy cove of Porthcurno, to the headland known as Logan Rock|
|Cliff caves near Land's End, from near Carn Barra|
|South of Land's End (behind camera), the granite cliffs are quite spectacular. Carn Boel from Pordenack Head.|
|By Gwennap Head, a few miles south of Land's End, is a spectacular system of cliff buttresses that are collectively known in the climbing fraternity as Chair Ladder, and this is perhaps the most imposing of them, rising virtually sheer from the sea.|
Three from the Alps...
Berner (Bernese) Oberland, near Adelboden)
|On the upper reaches of the ascent of the Bunderspitz (2,546 m), the rugged ridge round the corrie top having a notch that is passable for walkers (the Bunderchrinde - just hidden by the buttresses on the left) and leading round to the Grosse Lohner (3,048 m) off to the right - not a walking route! Kandersteg is way down on the other side of that ridge. The upper of the two foreground people is Eric Gillette, who at that time was Local Government Ombudsman for Scotland. He is also one of the figures in the photo below. (July 1985)|
|About 9.0 in the morning on the summit of the Wildstrubel (Grossstrubel) (3,243 m), after a pre-dawn 4.30 start from Engstligenalp. (July 1985)|
|Earlier that morning: the spectacular ridge - the Ammertengrat - leading up from the Ammertenhorn (beyond). My route didn't come along that ridge but came in from the right, and then continued in the direction behind the camera.|
And one from my own living room window in Exeter...
|Part of an exceptional sunset on 10th November 2002. The colour is too strong for me to want to use it as wallpaper myself, but we all have different tastes...|
for high grade breaths of fresh air galore!