botanical colours galore

My Walk this Week 159 – Botanical Beauty

My walk this week looks and listens to some botanical beauty in Swansea’s Singleton Park. It is late Spring and new arrangements have been made in the formal garden and the colours abound in the less formal areas.

Swansea Botanic Gardens

Swansea Botanic Gardens

The hot-house is exotic with the blooming of enormous bright flowers and the sound of running water accompanies the humidity in one section while fading away in the cactus house. The twisting paths both inside and out give a sense of exploration and discovery as you round a corner or enter a “tunnel” and find another colourful viewpoint or vista.

Swansea Botanic Soundscape

Sitting in the peacefulness of the arranged beds, listening to the birds and the gentle hoeing of the gardeners, Continue reading

Landscape overview

My Walk this Week 158 – Uphill from The Waterside

My walk this week is a welcome return to my friends Sue and Steve at The Waterside in a nearby Welsh valley where they have a beautiful lake and a fascinating herd of alpacas. I wanted to climb uphill from the lakeside to get more of an overview of the valley and the landscape around it. On this particular morning I had spent my time doing admin and taking a break in such a relaxing location was just what I needed.

bluebells on the hillside

Hillside by The Waterside

So after an enjoyable lunch on the First Friday open day in May I took myself off to look at the bluebells and blossom of the hill on the far side of the lake. The sun shone intermittently and Continue reading

Bluebells by the river

My Walk this Week 156 – Springtime Hill

My walk this week follows an uphill route I have climbed many times in the past but on a sunny Springtime morning felt really fresh and new. Atop the hill the view was very hazy for me and the crow below and I could see across to the far side of the valley and area of woodland that is being harvested for its conifers. My walks through those woods will never be the same again and while I knew that some day the trees would be felled, I feel very sad about it.

Crow with a view

The sunlight and life of this walk on Goppa Hill had no sadness to it and as I walked up the hollow way I was surprised to meet a goat which I thought had a somewhat “knowing” smile on its face. What it knew I cannot say but he appeared to be welcoming enough to a stranger and let me pass on by to say hello to a group of playful young cows in the field above.Continue reading

pussy willow

My Walk this Week 154 – Golden Grove, Gelli Aur

My walk this week was at Golden Grove or Gelli Aur as we call it in Wales. It was particularly enjoyable because the park has been closed for the last five years or so and it was wonderful to be able to wander round it again.

Golden Grove

Although the arboretum is only accessible if you pay, the rest of the park, even without being able to walk the circuit through the arboretum and the deer enclosure, it is still a beautiful place to visit. The cafe has opened again too and is serving some very nice home made food.Continue reading

Kenfig beach

My Walk this Week 152 – Sound of Sunny Seaside Larks

My walk this week is from the burrows and beach at Kenfig on the South Wales coast where, on a sunny Sunday, we heard the most beautiful sound of seaside larks rejoicing in the afternoon sunshine. Both they and the wonderful weather made for a very enjoyable walk through the dunes and down to the expansive beach and an ebb tide.

tree and lake

Heading first for Kenfig Pool, it seemed the water level was up from recent rain and to judge from the route we were forced to take to get to the beach, the recent storms had fulfilled their aim of dumping as much rain as possible in as short a time as possible. Continue reading

patchwork landscape

My Walk this Week 142 – Circular Hill Walk

For my walk this week I started out early, when it was still quite dark, but this circular hill walk was really very enjoyable, even though the sun never managed to break through and the whole day was dim.

Early morning light

The day was just beginning for birds and builders alike and these start-of-the-day sounds accompanied me as I climbed Graig Fawr. Up on top the wind took over and gently buffeted me as I looked through the grasses and old brown bracken to the Loughor EstuaryContinue reading

Distant Gower from The Mawr

My Walk this Week 141 – Exploring Down from The Mawr

On my walk this week I went exploring a footpath I have passed on top of The Mawr on many occasions but never stopped for a closer look – until now.

Woodland ravine path

Looking across to the Gower Peninsula in the distance, I stood and enjoyed the wind as it gently swirled around me and brought the sound of skylarks to my ears.¬†Setting off down an old moss covered farm track, it wasn’t longContinue reading

sun rays

My Walk this Week 140 – First Walk of the New Year

My walk this week is my first of 2019 and I realised, while walking, that my first walk of every year for the last 18 years or so has been this same walk. Normally it would be with my wife and we would be walking, rather than driving, because I would not have been driving on New Year’s Eve.

trees and blue sky

My wife didn’t have her walking shoes with her and although I was sorry not to walk with her at the start of the year, this did give me ¬†a better opportunity to stop and take photographs and do a little field recording, albeit on my phone.

It was a beautiful day with a blue sky and warm sun (for the time of year) but despite this I decided that some of the images should be monochrome.Continue reading

tree reflection

My Walk this Week 139 – Christmas Day Walk

My walk this week was taken in our local park on Christmas Day when the park was almost empty of other people but lively with the sound of birds. I had the idea that the birds thought it might be Spring, perhaps influenced by the warm weather.

Trees and geese

Whatever time of year they thought it was, the geese were in flight, but I only spotted them in the photograph above after I got home again.

This was an impromptu walk and as such all the photos and sound recording I did was on my phone, and that is OK, thoughContinue reading

bare branches

My Walk this Week 138 – Another Quarry Walk Through Time

My walk this week is to another quarry but one that is quite different from that which I explored last week. The rock is not black this time but the sides are steep and I cannot imagine how the writer of the graffiti, still to be faintly seen near the top of the quarry face, got up there. Nor can I make out what is written as time and weather has done its work and taken most of it away.

Dantwyn Quarry

It is 35 years since I first explored this place in my local countryside and I guess the plants and trees have grown up since then. I certainly remember it being more open back then, whereas now the small footpath leading through to the pool at the foot of the rock face is kept open only by a few dog walkers and young people playing on bikes, sitting round a bonfire or perhaps writing some more graffiti.

Dantwyn Quarry Soundscape

Continue reading