Sean had the following to say about the Winter Solstice Experience 2021…
“I’ve been retreating into nature privately for years, in a forest, on a beach, in a field. At night-time there is the added advantage that distractions are reduced, as the light fades the rest of the world seems to become quiet. I set myself very clear guidelines to follow, like I must remain positive and creative. It’s not like going camping. It’s way more basic, just strolling around, eating, sitting, gathering sticks, lighting a fire, staying warm, making things, imagining things, observing nature, that kind of thing. I’ve done them before where I make an overnight shelter but I actually prefer pacing myself and staying awake. I’ve done a few variations of this up to a maximum of a 24 hour continuous version. I have personally found these excursions to be grounding and refreshing.
I’ve only recently started to share these kinds of experiences with others. I’ve done several outdoor night events for festivals and private groups. During Culture Night this year I brought 10 participants on a night experience and I was delighted with the positive feedback.
So I’m really looking forward to this Winter Solstice event. Each of us will experience it in a unique and personal way yet we will stand together and pause in harmony. Our focus will be to emerge with new vitality and positive intentions.”
You will need to pace yourself for the long haul. The event starts at 3.30pm on Monday December 20th at a location on the Copper Coast that will be disclosed to participants that have booked. The event will be completed at 9.30am on Tuesday morning, December 21st. That’s 18 hours in total! 15 hours of the event is during ‘darkness’. The Solstice marks the longest night of the year after all (and the shortest day of the year).
Each participant must be available to attend from the start time and must agree to attempt the full experience. The start and end of the event are very important times as they both occur during the Golden Hour when there is potential for dramatic light. We start just before the sun sets and we end the event not long after the sun rises.
Astronomical and Tidal Events during the experience;
|3.15pm||Golden Hour Starts||Monday December 20th
|3.30pm||Event Starts||Monday December 20th|
|4.18pm||Sunset||Monday December 20th|
|4.59pm||Civil Twilight Ends||Monday December 20th|
|5.04pm||Moonrise||Monday December 20th|
|5.43pm||Nautical Twilight Ends||Monday December 20th|
|6.25pm||Astronomical Twilight Ends||Monday December 20th|
|1.58am||Moon Transit||Tuesday December 21st|
|6.29am||Astronomical Twilight Starts||Tuesday December 21st|
|7.10am||Nautical Twilight Starts||Tuesday December 21st|
|7.54am||Civil Twilight Starts||Tuesday December 21st|
|8.35am||Sunrise||Tuesday December 21st|
|9.30am||Event Ends||Tuesday December 21st|
|9.39am||Golden Hour Ends||Tuesday December 21st|
|10.46am||Moonset||Tuesday December 21st|
|3.59pm||Solstice||Tuesday December 21st|
Hot drinks, cold drinks and light refreshments will be available throughout the night.
A vegetarian breakfast will be served in the morning. If you have any dietary requirements please let us know when booking.
What you will be doing…
Strolling. Stopping. Resting. Being Still. Dreaming. Being mindful. Being positive. Connecting with nature. Pondering the universe. Slowing down. Relaxing quietly with the group around an open fire. Wandering off for some private time in nature. Breathing. Listening. Absorbing your surroundings. Sky Gazing. Fire Gazing. Observing last light. Experiencing nature during nightfall. Observing first light.
Group sensory activities…
Sean will facilitate a series of group activities throughout the event including;
Walking quietly and slowly together
Walking a tightrope on the surface of the sand
Being barefoot in the sea
Being barefoot on grass
Being blindfold on a beach
The Fire Procession…
We will be creating an open fire in an old washing machine drum. It creates a welcoming centerpiece to the occasion. At some stage during the night we will bring the fire on a symbolic journey in a wheelbarrow along the coast road! This has proved to be a popular part of our night-time events. Fire is such a primal resource and bringing fire on a journey like this somehow seems to connect us to our ancestors and it’s quite a spectacle!
What you won’t be doing…
Sean will facilitate the proceedings in a simple and calm manner at a pace to suit participants and the atmosphere of the event. However this is not a fully guided experience. There won’t be any guided meditation, mindfulness, ancient rituals, singing, chanting or dancing. You will be embarking on an individual journey in nature while in the company of others. Talking will be limited. You will not be listening to someone’s life story around a campfire! Alcoholic drink, drugs, music and swimming is prohibited during the event.
Here are some photos from our last nighttime gathering ‘Nature Immersion at Nightfall’ for Culture Night…
Further photos and a statement about the ‘Nature Immersion at Nightfall’ event are here; https://cutt.ly/sEKis4P
What to bring…
A high vis jacket is essential
A refillable travel cup
A refillable water bottle
A fully charged phone
A blindfold (a bandana or a scarf will do)
2 large refuse bags or a yoga mat to sit or lay on
A small back-pack
A blanket and a cushion
Be prepared for low temperatures and potential rain! Bring what you need to stay warm and dry. Ski pants, leggings, layers, a dry robe, rainproof jacket and trousers. Bring a warm hat and gloves. We will be studying the weather forecast beforehand to have a clearer idea but best to be prepared!
It’s certainly not a marathon but we will be walking on the road, on the shore, on the cliffs and in fields. A reasonable level of fitness is required as we will be on our feet and walking for quite a lot of the time. Bring footwear that you find comfortable to walk in. Bring a change of footwear and a couple of changes of socks if your feet get wet. Bring a small hand towel to dry your feet. Bring the warmest, most comfortable footwear you have for when we are relaxing around the fire. Be prepared to go barefoot too!
Torches, photos and phones…
General visibility can be greatly reduced by using a torch since your eyes can’t adjust to the ambient light of the night sky due to the harsh light of the torch! So please only use a torch or the light on your phone when really necessary! There will be plenty of light as the full moon will have arrived on the 19th December. Our eyes will adjust to the ‘dark’!
Feel free to take a few photos on your phone but please don’t let it distract you or others from the experience. Apart from occasional photos we ask you not to use your phone for social media or unessential texts or phone calls. If possible set your phone to aeroplane mode so you won’t receive notifications or at least set your phone to silent. Keep your phone in a zip-lock bag to keep it dry.
What NOT to bring…
Sean will have a shovel with him so you can easily make a seat from sand that can be lined with your yoga mat or refuse bags. If you prefer more conventional comfort bring a garden chair! Since refreshments are provided there is no need to bring any provisions. Other than your car keys and your phone please do not bring any other valuables. Please keep your personal possessions in a secure place, don’t loose your keys!
How to book…
Sean is willing to bring a maximum of 10 participants on this experience.
The cost is €80 per person.
In order to reserve a place you must make an online payment using Visa or Paypal on this page.
Payment is essential before a reservation can be made.
No cash will be accepted during the event.
Please include your full name and a mobile number when you are booking your place.
You will be added to a WhatsApp group with the other participants.
In this WhatsApp group Sean will share further updates and the meet up location.
If for any reason you are unable to attend a full refund will be issued.
Cancellations within 10 days of the event are non refundable but if you’d like to transfer your place to someone else then just give us their full name and mobile number.