Fun and Games on the Beach

The sky may still be murky on this Swansea Bay walk, but the dogs are having great fun playing games on the beach. Walking along the tide line, it was great to watch them and see how much they enjoyed it. The patterns of tracks they left in the sand were mostly chaotic, but now and then there would be clear arc of paw prints showing a dog’s direction as it chased a stick or ball.

Other fascinating patterns were also to be seen in the black sand or coal dust covering part of this eastern end of the beach.

dog tracks

Playing Fetch

If viewing this in an email, to see the sound player you will need to visit the blog – please click the post title to view the full post.

Waves of Grey and Lack of Light

The waves breaking on the South Gower coast near Southgate may not be the huge breakers that can be seen on some coastlines around the world, but I wouldn’t fancy falling in there on a day like this!

In writing this post about my walk between Southgate and Three Cliffs Bay on this wild and windy day, I realised that I had made the third image monotone. The strength of colour in our surroundings comes from reflected light and as there is so little light on a day like this, there is consequently very little obvious colour. In reality of course there is colour and even in the sea, if you focus your attention, there is a range of subtle colours to be seen. The trouble is that in weather like this the inclination to stand still and observe intently is rather weak and the sensation instead, is that the day is dark, the wind is wild, the rain is wet and it is time to get back inside, not linger too long on the edge of the cliffs however many colours there may or may not be.

And so I headed back to the Three Cliffs Coffee Shop at Southgate for another cuppa and to calm the wind that had been blasting my brain for the last hour or two.

waves

waves

waves

Blown Away at the Point of Return

This was the point the group reached on the Taste of Gower walk at Southgate. Looking over the edge to Three Cliffs Bay, it was disappointing not to go any further but the wind was very wild and this was causing difficulty for some in the group.

Having gone out again on my own afterwards, this was again the point I reached with my cameras and sound kit before deciding to turn back. I may have found the wind exhilarating but the rain which had started to blow in from the sea was less so.

All of the photos taken on this outing are rather grainy and in some cases they were a bit blurred. Considering the weather conditions, even if I had taken my tripod I would not have faired any better – it would simply have been blown away just as I was on one or two occasions!

Below is another short sound clip from my walk. For those of you with an interest in these things, the strength of the wind is evident in this clip recorded with my RODE NTG-3 shotgun mic with a Blimp windshield and dead cat fluffy cover onto a Fostex FR-2LE.

Wild Wind at Southgate 2

Wild Wind at Southgate 2

waves

Walkers at Three Cliffs Bay

Taste of Gower - Southgate-23

Gothic Light

Exposed as I was to the weather on my walk at Southgate, I again used less exposure in these shots of the cliffs at Three Cliffs Bay on South Gower than was technically correct. However, as on previous occasions, this was deliberate and the result is definitely more realistic in terms of how it felt than if I had used the correct exposure. The result is quite Gothic in atmosphere.

The second shot is monochrome and can be seen on Leanne Cole’s Photography blog post Monochrome Madness MM 2-34.

cliffs

Gower cliffs

There and Back Again – My Walk this Week 9

If my walk last week was peaceful and calm, this weeks walk is quite the opposite! Another Taste of Gower walk organised by Mike Aspland and the Swansea Walking Forum with the support of Gower Landscapes Partnership, this walk along the cliffs at Southgate was bit windy to say the least.

We walked far enough to look down on Three Cliffs Bay (not far) but at that point the leaders decided to turn back. The weather was very wild and as some in the group were struggling with it, it was the right decision and we all headed back to the Three Cliffs Coffee Shop.

In fact some of us took another short walk in the opposite direction and I decided that after eating another great lunch at the cafe, I would venture out again with my recorder and cameras. So I will be able to post about this walk through the coming week as intended – I hope it blows you away – sorry about the pun 😉

Listen below is a short sound clip of the wind.

Wild Wind at Southgate

Wild Wind at Southgate

walking on Gower

Walking and a True Sense of Scale

Having completed the circular walk from Rhosilli with Swansea Walking Forum and enjoyed the food at the Bay Bistro courtesy of the Gower Landscapes Partnership “Tastes of Gower “project, I walked down the steep footpath to Rhosilli beach. On the way down I could see in the distance a couple walking out along the beach. By the time I was down on the beach and had taken some sandy photos (to be posted on Saturday), they were heading back towards me.

There is nothing like people in a scene like this to give a true sense of scale!

Rhosilli Bay footpath

Rhosilli Bay

Rhosilli beach

 

Rhosilli cliffs

Walking To Fall Bay

The Walking Forum Tastes of Gower walk at Rhosilli on the Gower Peninsula took us round from the Worm’s Head to Fall Bay, a place I had not been to for many years. Being a beautiful day there were inevitably more people than us out for a walk, but even though I prefer a solitary walk to a group walk generally speaking, Fall Bay is secluded enough to enjoy in almost any circumstances.

The series of cliffs that form the south Gower coastline are particularly impressive at Fall Bay. This is enhanced by the fact that you can approach them from the seaward side as the land curves around towards the Worm’s Head which is behind us in this first photo.

walking on the Gower Peninsula

Cliffs at Fall Bay

Rocks and Ripples

Viewing the rocks and sand ripples from above on my cliff walk at Rhosilli on the Gower peninsula revealed some fascinating patterns. I loved the complex textures of jagged rocks dotted with white gulls and the smoother flat patterns of wave platform structures seen on our way round to Fall Bay from the Worms Head.

The sand ripples may be a common pattern but I liked the subtle sunlight and shade. I thought it might be worth looking at it in black and white and in converting the image I also heightened the contrast quite a lot. The monochrome shot can be seen tomorrow on Leanne Cole’s Photography blog post Monochrome Madness 2-30. I can’t make up my mind which I prefer – subtle colour or contrasty monochrome.

rock patterns

wave platform rock patterns

sand ripples

monochrome sand ripples