"Wet Feet Two to Wet Feet One, can you hear me?"
"Receiveing you Wet Feet Two, go ahead."
"The cloud has come down on my bit, I have no visibility, it's pouring with rain and the wind's picked up. I think it's time to call it a day."
"Yes, I was thinking the same thing. See you back at the truck!"
Just a bit of fun, but this is an insight into the radio chatter this week, which has seen us rained off on several occasions on sites in Perthshire and Inverness-shire. When the weather changes for the worst in the Highlands, it happens suddenly and without restraint, making our job as Field Assistants just that little bit more challenging. For this reason, it is incredibly important that our navigation skills are practiced in a range of conditions throughout the survey season, so that our knowledge is strong when it matters most. Our navigating ability must not be hindered by the thickest of fog, heaviest of rain, and strongest of winds - all of which Scotland can throw out in one almighty episode! Early in the season we may still have blizzards blowing through which we need to contend with.
Taylor Wildlife provides Field Assistants with emergency shelters, SPOT emergency devices, GPS devices and radios in addition to the surveyors own mobile phones, but technology should never be relied upon and a map and compass should always be carried. Training with map and compass is carried out throughout the season, as ultimately it requires a calm and logical mindset to get yourself from one destination to another safely.
Here comes the rain again!