While some folk were getting ready for turkey on Christmas Day, opening presents or washing sprouts, isles vlogger Gavin Bell kept up another tradition – plunging into the North Sea at Sands of Sound.
Armed with a camera, a pair of trunks and a Santa hat, Gavin certainly didn’t let the icy waters put him off.
“It started as my brother’s idea,” said Gavin.
“He thought it would be a good idea to jump in the sea for a wee swim in order to build an appetite for Christmas dinner. [A] quick swim, home for a shower, then you’re good to go for a feast.
“I then joined in, and also did a few others, so it became a bit of a tradition for us all.”
Gavin said the Christmas dip has been on the go for the last 10 years or so.
“We used to go to Burra for a walk on Christmas Day and jump in for a quick swim.
“Now we go to Sands of Sound and typically there’s around 10 of us that jump in.”
Gavin said there had been some pretty terrible weather over the years, with a mixture of a cold sea, wind, and sand blasting in your face all adding to the fun.
Although this year he had a seal to keep him company.
Asked what was worse, jumping in or getting out? He laughed: “It’s all pretty terrible to be honest.
“The worst bit is probably once you’ve been in, having to clamber out with swollen (or at least they feel swollen) feet, then driving back home half-naked around Lerwick. But the feeling when you get in the shower, [you] can’t beat it.”
And after a warm through it’s time for a quick cuppa and Christmas with the family.
“As I say, you’re certainly ready to get stuck into Christmas Dinner after all that.”