morning mist and sun

My Walk this Week 247 – Misty Marshes

My walk this week is really my walk last week when I ventured down to the misty marshes early one morning before the day warmed up and enjoyed capturing this beautiful place with stills, video and audio.

Any environment differs according to the weather conditions, but this can be perceived in different ways. Visually (and in a tactile way) the misty marshes are exciting to me. Even though the river is moving ever so slowly, the fog in the air is mysterious and the atmosphere is dank or clammy to the touch.

An excess of moisture is literally hanging in the air and this changes our experience of sound as well as vision. The short video clip above shows the this moisture and also transports the sound of traffic on the motorway very efficiently. The result of course is that on this day, at that time, the marshes were noisier than usual – not only with the busy road but also with the birds shouting over it.

In the soundscape below I have been able to focus more on the birds than on the background traffic and we do this with our ears (or rather our brains) as well – filter out or dim down the sounds we do not want to listen to and focus on the those we enjoy most. That, for me, is not only the birds and in this instance includes those wonderful gates as well.

And then there are the stills, an opportunity to capture a moment in time, a snippet of what is seen and felt, both of the broader landscape and also some of its details, textures, patters, nuances.

I hope you can enjoy the different aspects of this little corner of Wales as much as I did on my walk. Click on the first image and look through the carousel on a larger scale while listening to the soundscape.

more perspective

My Walk this Week 246 – Parks and Park Keeping

My walk this week was through three different Swansea parks  – it was a very pleasant walk but one which started with something of a challenge to my patience when it comes to park keeping!

St James’ Park is small but has a wonderful collection of trees, some of which are truly majestic in stature. It is a wonderful environmental oasis in an urban setting which naturally has a regular deposit of leaves and pine needles on the ground. And this is where my patience was tested – not by the leaves but by the park keeper using a leaf blower to clear them. I say “clear”, but really, that is a joke. I find the noise pollution alone is enough to set me ranting.

So please excuse my opening to this post and enjoy the dulcet tones of the leaf blower with a brief scan of the St James’ Park and then move quickly on to the preferable sounds of the birds, children playing and adults walking in Brynmill and Singleton Parks.

St James’ Park
Parks Soundscape
Mumbles lighthouse

My Walk this Week 233 – The Sea The Sea

On my walk this week I was mesmerised by the susurration of the sea, the sea. It was the light and colour that really caught my eye, but when looking at its gentle, repetitive movements and listening to its rhythmical shush and liquid intricacies I couldn’t help but be enamoured of the full expanse of Swansea Bay at high tide.

Still using my iPhone I am frustrated by the effect even a slight breeze has on its microphones – but the distortion in the audio in this video is not what is in my memory.

Being in Mumbles to run an errand with my daughter (Hannah Duncan Creations), we took the opportunity to walk along the seafront to the pier. The sunlight caught the outcrops of rock, made islands by the high tide, on which the lighthouse is built and the sharp edge made me think of the shot of Catalina Apple used for the operating system of that name. Looking at that system image afterwards, I was less convinced of any similarity.

I only took a few photographs and short video clips but the walk was a very enjoyable and welcome break from the darkness the seemingly interminable rain brings. It’s not so much the rain I dislike as the lack of light that comes with it.

Gate to the mountain

My Walk this Week 232 – Wandering the Hillside

My walk this week is more of a wander on Cefn Drum, one of our local hills. Being a sunny Sunday afternoon, the hillside was busy with 4 or 5 other people gently strolling along the labyrinth of footpaths, so I didn’t hang around long and beat a retreat back down the hollow way seen in my last post.

The video includes flowing water again, but this is a sound it can be hard not to hear in Wales, especially at this time of year. And once again the video is also my soundscape for this week and indeed it includes separately recorded sound as well as that recorded as video.

My walk started well before the gate to the mountain (we say mountain but really it is a hill rising to about 750 feet), but a gate is a good starting point, a threshold, whatever rusty state it may be in.

My walk on the hillside ended with another battered aged gate, one with a different perspective, at least from the angle I photographed it.

 

view from the path

My Walk this Week 211 – Straight Along the Cycle Path

My walk this week is straight along a local cycle path that I have not walked along in the current season for a few years.

Gorseinon Cycle Path

I used to walk this path every weekend during school term time when my daughter was in dance classes nearby. Whether raining or sunny, the walk is a beautiful one and twice the length I walked of it this time as I waited for my car in a local garage.

As with my previous walk on the marshes last week, the path was busy with walkers and cyclists – everyone taking advantage of the good weather and some going for a play about in a secluded pool in the local river. You can hear the laughter and voices of youngsters enjoying themselves in the soundscape below.

Cycle Path Soundscape

All photos were taken on my iPhone and also the sound recording, which suffered a bit from the breeze.

The soundscape media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, please visit the website to listen to the soundscape and view the images at the same time.

Running into the wind

My Walk this Week 205 – Memories of North Wales

My walk this week is from the archives with memories of North Wales and a windy visit to Colwyn Bay.

Paraglider and rainbow

Some were taking advantage of the wind in a colourful way and the sky just wanted to join in by throwing out a rainbow to accompany the wind surfing paraglider, while other like myself were getting rather more battered by it. Nonetheless, it was an enjoyable walk and thrilling to be entertained by those men and their “flying machines”.

The patterns and colours of sand and wind, rust and fencing, waves and water effects in what appears to have been a changeable day are a good reminder of the experience. The soundscape also serves as an excellent transportation device to take me back there with the images – I can almost feel and smell the sea spray!

Colwyn Bay Soundscape

The soundscape media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, please visit the website to listen to the soundscape and look at the images at the same time.

 

Looking east

My Walk this Week 200 – Overlooking the Landscape from Paxton’s Tower

My walk this week was in a location carefully selected to not have many other people around – Paxton’s Tower in Carmarthenshire, Wales. Please remember that these blog posts are not intended to prompt you to go out during this difficult time with the Coronavirus, but rather to bring the outside in and hopefully help with some of the difficulties of confinement. For more free StillWalks® resources visit my previous post.

Looking north west

It was a beautiful day and the views from the hill on top of which Paxton’s Tower sits were also beautiful. The photos below look in all geographical directions as well as up at and up in the tower. There are some details too – signs of Spring and the patterns and textures of the full cycle of life.

Can you see the horned creature leaping out of the dead tree? Continue reading

bending lines

My Walk this Week 195 – Station Stroll

My walk this week is more of a stroll along my local railway station and is another short walk fitted in between other things going on in my day.

tunnel and light

Having to wait for something or other, I took a wander down there knowing that, as stations go, it is quite an attractive one. The thick carpet of moss on the unused section of the bending platform was luxurious to say the least – it felt wonderful to walk on! When I turned round to face the sunshine, I could see the light, not at the end of the tunnel but at its far side. Powerful and bright in the distance, it was a classic effect of the conditions.

One of the other noticeable things about the station was the number of bright-sounding birds – I wasn’t the only one enjoying a brief respite from the wind and rain of one storm following directly on from another. And if you listen, you will here amongst them one of our local song thrushes 🙂Continue reading