I stopped on top of the hills on my way home recently, just because it is a place worth stopping. The sights and sounds, the peace and tranquility (on a warm quiet day) of the Mawr area in the county of Swansea . . .
It was a very hazy day but the views from the hills were still great.
Swansea Walking Forum meet once a month and although this has often been a matter of sitting around a table and sharing the news of different walking groups in the area, this week we met at Garnswllt Activity Centre and went for a walk first. What an excellent idea! Climbing up the Garnswllt end of Graig Fawr, we took nearly 2 hours to complete a circuit that provided beautiful hazy views across the hills and over Ammanford. Following the walk we were able to sit down with a cup of tea and biscuits in the Activity Centre which has been excellently converted from the old village school.
It was a beautiful day and the larks were singing their hearts out up above us. I had taken my recording kit and held back a little in order to record the sounds of without the chatter of the group in the background. Listen to the sounds below – either click the play button or the mp3 file name.
This week’s featured StillWalks video is set a few weeks ahead of the current date in terms of the time of year but the flowers and activity of the birds celebrate the beautiful sunny weather of Spring with gusto and are a welcome change to the wild, wet and windy weather we had through Winter.
The video above is in 480p quality. You can use the Donate button below to pay however much you want and receive a high quality (720HD) download of this week’s featured StillWalks video – “Garden Park Walk – Spring” which features Clyne Gardens in Swansea, South Wales. Click the image above to watch the video. DVD Collections are also available to order in the StillWalks Shop.
Potential StillWalk – the other day I took a walk down a footpath I hadn’t been to for a number of years, pre-StillWalks times. Looking with “new” eyes and listening with “new” ears was fascinating.
The sound of water – There can sometimes be a recording issue with the sounds of an environment that includes running water, i.e. a stream or river. The sounds of the flowing water can so easily drown out other sounds of the environment such as birds, and can become wearing if it is permanent.
However, the small Camffrwd River that the footpath follows did not present this problem. The sounds of the river ebbed and flowed in volume with the arrangement of rocks on its bed. The photos below are accompanied by some sound clips recorded on my iPhone, as were the photos.
Recording 2 stream A short clip of the general sounds of the river.
Recording 4 birds ftstps stream The birds make their presence obvious as the sound of water is less dominant and the flow sounds change as I walk along the path.
Recording 5 walking stream This is a longer clip (2:15) which demonstrates very well the changing sound environment as I move along the path and river.
Unique sounds – All the sound clips and photos prove the need, in producing a StillWalk, to carry out the sound recording at the same time as the photography. The sounds on any day, at any time of day, at any time of year, will always be specific to conditions at the time . . . makes me think of the chaos theory and the interconnectedness of things! Chaos by James Gleick is a fascinating and very accessible book on this subject.