coastal windblown tree

My Walk this Week 167 – Coastal Footpath and Windblown Wildflowers

My walk this week follows part of the South Gower coastal footpath along which we found so many different wildflowers. The day was bright and breezy and the sea twinkled in the sunlight as it crashed against the rugged rocks of the cliffs below us.

South Gower cliffs

Proof of the prevailing wind can be seen in the sculpted and stunted hawthorn tree standing on its own. The hillside was a forest of gorse growing thickly andContinue 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

weather coming in

My Walk this Week 129 – Down from Rhossili Down

Climbing up the Down from the village of Rhossili on my walk this week at the end of the Gower Peninsula, was not a problem – it’s fairly steep but I like climbing. Less so do I like coming back down again and on this occasion my knees had decided they had had enough.

Rhossili Bay beach path

This has happened on one or two occasions when walking but I have never let it stop me. I do, however, need to pace myself and not go rushing off at the start of a walk. Descending from the Down four years ago is one of my clearest memories of the walk. 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.

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

top of the walk

One Amongst Many

One amongst many refers both to the one black leaf of the family on the forest footpath and also to this, the fourth of my walks this week and a return to a local woodland.

This is one of my most frequent local walks . . .  and every time it is different! Whether it be the time of year or the current weather conditions, and even if the same objects are there each time, I still get a fresh look at them, perhaps enjoy them from a different angle, under different light conditions, or whatever.Continue reading

My Walk this Week – Memorial Walk in Aid of Old Mill Foundation Cancer Hospice

Walkers gather at Rhossili

My walk this week is a walk in memory of Mike Aspland, a walk leader who died of cancer at the end of last year and had benefitted from the services provided by the Old Mill Foundation cancer hospice in Penclawdd on North Gower. The walk took place Rhossili and aimed to raise funds for the hospice – if anyone would like to donate to the the Old Mill Foundation, please visit their website and click the “Donate” button.Continue reading