valley fog

Sunlight, Sheep and Fog

Gaining the top of the hill on my walk this week from fog to sunlight, I was followed by a flock of hopeful sheep looking expectantly at me – I suspect the farmer was due or perhaps the sheep though he was overdue!

Goppa sheep

My route took me past familiar objects both natural and man made. The rhododendrons perhaps have an element of both – they are natural but not native to the UK and can take over a whole hillside as they have in this location.Continue reading

sheep and frost

Open Landscape and Under Cover

Reaching the highest point on my walk this week allowed me to look out across the open landscape to towards the Gower Peninsula. Every time I stand in this spot I take a couple of photos and on this occasion I was also tempted by the rising sunlight and pale frost covered fields to capture the fence heading off in perspective to be silhouetted against the sky.

Open perspective

Heading back under cover of the woodland my aural experience was still and peaceful and I tried to keep it that way by taking careful footsteps on the soft ground – not so easy when the ground is covered in crisp leaves from Autumn, but straightforward enough when on the thick carpet of pine needles and moss. Tomorrow I’ll post my short soundscape for the walk.

Waterside footbridge

Lingering Around the Lake

Lingering around the lake at The Waterside is a very easy thing to do. On my walk this week the weather was good – sunny and almost still with just the lightest of breezes from time to time.

reed island

A walk here is more about wellbeing than exercise and whatever the weather conditions, there is huge advantage to be gained from a quiet contemplation of the place and the space.Continue reading

Dark Mirror

Dark Still Mirror and Expanding Ripples

My walk this week took me under and over a number of structures spanning the Tennant Canal – railway track, vehicle track, road, motorway, footbridge and gantry. Underneath these the sound changed and the dark mirror that was the still water of the canal was broken by expanding ripples as drips dripped from the structures above.

expanding ripples

Walking over the gantry and footbridge gave me a slightly elevated view of the of the woodland reflections in the dark water. That does not mean the water was dark, in fact it was beautifully clear.Continue reading

rusty fence

My Walk this Week – Reflecting On The Canal

My walk this week is along a section of the Tennant Canal on the eastern edge of Swansea. I have walked along this footpath on a few occasions, the last time being a couple of years ago and  the conditions now are similar to what they were then.

reflection

Similar conditions does not mean I have taken the same photographs as last time, although the swans are still there and one posed perfectly for me while the other slept. Continue reading

Pwll Du Bay

Project Walk 2 – Reviewing the Walks

This, the second of the walking routes for the Our Gower Project, included on consecutive days both wet weather and dry. While the dry was more relaxing, the wet provided both atmosphere and a different, and perhaps more varied soundscape.

Pwll Du Beach

The images below are a selection from both days while the soundscape is from the second (dry) day. Although I said the wet weather provided a more variations in the aural environment,Continue reading

Pwll Du beach

Our Gower Project Walk 2 – Pwll Du Bay, Wet and Dry

The second stage of the second of the Our Gower project walks brought us out from the muddy woodland of Bishopston Valley to the unique beach of Pwll Du. It is unique because of its deposit of stones build up over decades of limestone quarrying in the 19th century. Below the stones is a normal sandy beach and wet or dry, it is a very attractive South Gower cove.

Walking on stones

The first day I walked this route with a school, it was wet. Like the mysteriousness of the valley woods, there was atmosphere in the bay as well. The sea fret contributed to this along with the huge piles of stonesContinue reading

upright moss

Bishopston Valley Details and No Rain

This walk for the “Our Gower” project extends beyond Bishopston Valley to the beach at Pwll Du, but I thought I would present some of the details of the valley which, with the dry weather of the second project day in the valley, allowed us to explore and photograph more easily.

Fungi community

We also recorded some of the sounds of the thickly wooded valley and made notes about the atmosphere of the place – how it made us feel, what its colours and textures were like and something of the history and geography of the environment. For instance, Guzzle HoleContinue reading

Ash walking staffs

My Walk this Week – Our Gower Project Walk 2, Bishopston Valley

The second of the schools I walked with on the Our Gower project had no more luck with the weather than when we walked out on the marshes (see last weeks posts) – if anything, it was worse!

Bishopston Valley

Bishopston Valley on South Gower is home to some wonderful ancient woodland . . . and when it is wet, it is also home to a great deal of mud. Despite the wet conditions (or perhaps because of them) everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. As well as Wellington boots, everyone had been givenContinue reading

Gower landscape

Our Gower Project Walk 1 – Reviewing the Walk

The “Our Gower” project, organised by with the Nature Conservation Team in the City and County of Swansea, involves more people than myself. There are Years 8 and 9 pupils from four different schools working with seven people from different organisations plus the school teachers to experience four of the wild outdoor environments of the Gower Peninsula in Wales.

Out in the mist

Tim Orell from the Nature Conservation Team is working with Gower Unearthed, Nature Days,  and  plus writers Emily Hinshelwood and Helen Nicholas to give the pupils an outdoor experience they won’t forget.Continue reading