National Geographic : 2010 Jan
Fingal's Cave, Sta a Rank upon rank of basalt pillars line this sea cavern, lit from within by the photographer. The natural precision of the columns and the echoes of lashing waves have captivated trav- elers since the late 18th century. calls "romantic tone painting at its purest." e sea was not in a collaborative mood the day celebrated English painter J. M. W. Turner took ship for Fingal's Cave in August 1831. "It is not very pleasant or safe when the wave rolls right in," Turner wrote. e steamer Maid of Mor ven could not land her passengers, so a few hardy souls, Turner included, rode a small pilot boat to the cave's entrance and leaped from the deck to slippery rocks. In the paint- ing that records Turner's wild journey, the cave and its great basalt columns are barely visible.