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.

 

early evening sunlight

My Walk this Week 231 – Going With the Flow

My walk this week is necessarily another local one and is going with the flow in more ways than one.

The literal flow is in the Afon Camffrwd, a small local river swollen somewhat by the recent rains. A more existential flow is about me taking the walk in the first place.

Near the end of another day of regular showers the need to get out and calm my mind, exercise my body and enjoy my surroundings was obvious to me. We have to accept and deal with the current pandemic situation as best we can. While I am able to continue my work in tapestry weaving and sound as a result of a stabilisation grant from the Arts Council of Wales National Lottery Good Causes fund, I am still affected, along with everyone else, by the Covid-19 lockdown and the restrictions that go with it. It is a strange and unsettling experience for us all.

Again the soundscape for this walk is in the form of a short video, but there are some more details from my walk in the images below.

 

 

River Fleet

My Walk this Week 178 – Scottish Woodland

My walk this week is another from Scotland where I took a stroll through woodland on the edge of Gatehouse of Fleet. Starting from the banks of the river Fleet, I enjoyed the familiar footpath as I twisted and turned in a loop, looking at my surroundings with a strong green cast to the light.

woodland footpath

It is a peaceful part of the country and while there is an inevitable background of man-made sound, the ambience of the forest was more noticeable with its birds and flowing water, a gentle breeze in the trees and just the occasional sound of other people in the area.Continue reading

foxgloves

My Walk this Week 170 – Wind on The Mawr

My walk this week is back up on top of The Mawr again – this time as a visit to the Awel Aman Tawe Community Wind Farm above Cwmgors. It was a beautiful day and the wind was blowing well, with the result that the turbine blades were turning fast and producing the electricity they were designed for.

Awel wind turbines

This moorland is on the eastern edge The Mawr – in fact I am not even sure if it is considered part of that upland landscape! Whether it is or not, the scenery is beautiful with views over to Pen-y-Fan, the Brecon Beacons highest peak and a peacefulness most of the time that I have spoken of before.Continue reading

lavender and box

My Walk this Week 163 – Sunbury Walled Garden

My walk this week is around Sunbury-on-Thames walled garden. It is just a few minutes down the river from Hampton Court where my walk took place last week.

entrance

I was lucky with the weather and thoroughly enjoyed both these recent walks. The reason I was there was not for walking but to discuss the arrangements for an exhibition of my tapestry weaving and sound work to be held in the Sunbury Embroidery Gallery next year.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

rigging and masts

My Walk this Week 151 – The Music of Storm Hannah

My walk this week was short, cold and through the remnants of Storm Hannah – it was part of a sound and weave workshop I was running over the weekend. The first stage of the workshop was to go round Swansea Marina and listen to the sounds which featured what is known as the Marina Orchestra.

dark water

The leading orchestral instruments are the masts and rigging followed by the percussion of clanks and bangs, thumps and gloops of other maritime artefacts and of course the choppy water of the marina itself.

It was wild and cold and although we found a relatively sheltered spot to listen to the “symphony”, when we ventured down to the seafront, Continue reading

Autumn pine

My Walk this Week 133 – Autumn Woodland

My walk this week is through a section of the forest in Penllergaer Valley Woods near Swansea in South Wales. I was keen to find a moment in our currently wet weather to see the colours that I know exist here at this time of year. Being a valley means you get to see the and hear the woodland from different vantage points with overviews of the slopes of yellowing trees as well as the closer details around the footpaths.

The soundscape is different in the depths of the valley to that on its upper edges – this is partly because, down below, you are sheltered from the background sound of traffic on the motorway. But the sound of birds is still masked somewhat by the waterfall at this time of year when it is raging and thundering down from the lake.

I hope that you will click the play button below and listen to the soundscape while viewing the images in sequence – perhaps the sound will help to bring the images to life and bring you closer to my own experience of the walk.

Autumn Woodland Soundscape