Rising Wind

hilltop view of 11 arched bridge

Rising slightly higher on my third walk up above the valley I began to get better views across the estuary. As this was the day of Storm Doris (Doris Day!), the wind was also rising or at least it sounded like it was.

The trees clustered round the phone mast on the top of Goppa hill are mostly coniferous and I have noted in the past that a different sound is created by the wind blowing through these rather than deciduous, broad leaved trees.

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Woodland and The Waterside – Reviewing the Walk

Arriving at The Waterside on my walk this week, the rain was coming down but I had managed to do my photography and field recording mostly without it. I was met by a couple of curious alpacas who were also getting wet but as they and I were reasonably protected by suitable clothing, it was not a big problem.

Not only did I enjoy my walk, I then followed it up with good company and a productive day’s creative conversation at The Waterside.

The Waterside - Felindre

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A Different Landscape

Having climbed up from the beach via the sand buried steps (see below) on my walk this week at Aberavon, south Wales, I continued east along the promenade path and found a different landscape to that which I had been enjoying down on the sand. The sea fret had lifted slightly as evidenced by a clearer view of the cranes but turning round and looking inland, the mist was still hanging low over the hills and the light, or lack of it, was still apparent and somehow fitting for the old ruined wooden harbour wall and jetties.

old jetty

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Promenade Reflection

The sea fret or mist stuck around for a while on my walk this week on Aberavon seafront in south Wales and contributed to this first image which I think is my favourite in this selection for today. I was there to visit the Health and Wellbeing fair in the Aberavon Beach Hotel and in the interest of that subject matter thought that I would go early and take a walk. The weather may have been dark and damp in the early morning but this is a fantastic place and lost nothing for all that.

promenade reflection

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Leaving the Cliffs Behind and Reviewing the Walk

Monknash footpath

leaving the cliffs behind

Although I said I didn’t do much field recording on this walk, I did manage to capture the sound of the wild wind there that day and if you listen carefully you will also hear the sound of a buoy bell ringing two or three times. The buoy floats just offshore and now and then was tossed roughly enough by the wind and waves to sound out faintly through the roar of wind and sea. Be warned – I have added the sound of the old fog horn to the end of this soundscape but there is an amusing ending to it if you care to listen.

Nash Point Soundscape

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Content of the Cliff

Nearing the end of my walk this week from Nash Point to Monknash on the South Wales cliff-lined coast I have arrived at the mouth of Nash Brook and a place where the cliff tops come down to beach level. Looking at the content of the cliff it is easy to see why they are no longer the towering structures I have been enjoying along the rest of the walk. Although the durability (or lack of) in the layers and blocks of the cliffs can be seen in the structures and curves in photos below, the geology seen in this first image is much softer and in part explains the small valley from which Nash Brook flows.

cliff texture

Layer Upon Layer and Pieces of the Jigsaw

The depth of each layer of the cliffs along this section of the South Wales coast varies, as do the colours. From my artist’s viewpoint (or anyone else’s for that matter) these make for some fascinating and beautiful patterns. I know the basics about the geology going on in features like this and the length of time involved, but you will have to ask a specialist such as Jessica’s Nature Blog or perhaps Google.

Huge chunks of the cliffs have fallen onto the pavement below. No doubt this has happened over millennia, but whatever the timescale and geology, it is difficult not to be in awe at the structural patterns in them and the wider layout of the what could be the draughts pieces of giants.

cliff layers

Alien Landscape and Pavement Perspective

My walk this week at Nash Point was like walking in an alien landscape, or a set for Dr Who and this stretch of coastline at Southerndown was used as a location for the time lord.

I risked going quite close to the foot of the cliffs to get these shots on my iPhone but didn’t hang around there for long. The cliffs are continually being eroded by sea and wind and I felt  much more comfortable taking in the pavement perspective of the wave platform a lull further back from the rocky layer cake that makes up the cliffs.

Nash Point

Nash Point

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Waves of Stone

Having first visited Nash Point Lighthouse on my walk this week, we actually started our circular walk at site of the StillWalks production “Breakers Walk”. From there we walked along the cliff tops back towards the Nash Point. The tide was out and the view over the wave platforms of this stretch of the South Wales coast were incredible. The patterns of those waves of stone were so clear – it was as though time had frozen still and allowed the structures to form in an instant.

Waves of Stone

Waves of Stone

wave platform

 

Nash Point footpath

Descent to Nash Point

Rocky Details of the Landscape

My walks up Cefn Drum, Cwm Dulais and Graig Fawr are some of my favourite local routes. The opportunity to find out from an expert about the geology of the area was not one to be missed. The landscape is beautiful at any time of year and just now it is particularly green.

Looking at the landscape as we walked up the side of Cefn Drum the colour of the non native rhododendrons was passed but similar colours were showing themselves in the foxgloves.

Cwm Dulais landscape

Cwm Dulais landscape

Our next stop on the walk allowed Geraint to show us more plant fossils and also a visitor to the area in the form of a rock that had been brought here from the Gower Peninsula not by truck but by glacier.

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