My Walk this Week – River Tawe

My walk this week is another urban walk – in fact it is downstream of last weeks walk along the banks of the River Tawe. This time I am at the mouth of the river and looking around part of Swansea Maritime Quarter and SA1 area.

My starting point is the weir at the entrance to the marina. To its left (looking inland) there is one of two busy locks used by a wide range of vessels, but I was more interested in the patterns of water falling over the weir at different points.

weir water

In some places the water is very churned up following its descent over a structure of steps while further across the river the water is at first perfectly smooth as it falls over the curved surface of the weir. Further over again, where there appear to be rocks embedded in the curve of the weir, the water patterns begin to ripple and the froth on the lower surface of water appears to start climbing the back up the weir.

Weir Water

If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.

Sensory Perception at the Lakeside

Nearing the end or turning point of my walk this week, I emerged from the riverside woodland footpath at the Enterprise Park near Llansamlet in Swansea. This zone has grown over the years and one of its main characteristics is that you are almost forced to take the car from place within the zone.

However, despite the sound of passing traffic (below), once I had crossed the road I was able to enjoy the lake that forms a central feature in the area. As in any urban area, there is always the background sound of city activity and traffic, but the lake here forms an essential and effective oasis from all that.

Lakeside

We need these oases in modern urban living, but it is not just a matter of them existing. We need to make sure we use them as they were intended and enjoy the natural benefits they can bring on a regular basis.

Walking around a lake or park, down a tree-lined street, along a river, we are offered the opportunity to not just exercise of our limbs, but also to exercise our sensory perception. Looking and/or listening is possible for almost everyone and in my experience is well worth it.

Passing Traffic

Lakeside Ambience

If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.

Riverside Wildflowers

On my walk this week along the riverside footpath by the Tawe from Morfa it was Spring going on Summer and the flowers were out to prove it – all but the buddleia.

Approaching one of the footbridges across the river there were plenty of the ribwort in the image below. It is a wildflower I particularly like, partly because of good memories playing with them as a child, but particularly at this time of year when they are in flower.

wildflower - Ribwort plantain

Of course, all of the wildflowers are special in their own right, even the dandelion – when it’s not all over your garden lawn! Below there is also, wood violet, herb robert, cowslip and primroses all lining the footpath of the River Tawe. There is one more, but I will post that tomorrow!

If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.

 

 

Under the Woodland Bridge

This was a first for me – viewing the railway into Swansea from underneath. For some reason it had not occurred to me that the Tawe riverside footpath would, at this location, inevitably pass under the railway.

There is something fascinating, even exciting, about the combination of natural and man made – wood, leaf, concrete and iron – the different (and similar) scales has as much to do with my fascination as the juxtaposed materials and textures.

Railway Bridge and trees

The reflection of the bridge in the waters of the river below provides a link between the hard functional materials of its construction and the more natural woodland lining the river.

Both the railway and the footpath were in use on this Sunday morning with plenty of walkers, joggers, children and dogs enjoying the woodland. However, I didn’t either see or hear a train during my walk.

Walking Conversations

If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.

My Walk this Week – Morfa and the Tawe

My walk this week is an urban one, although the footpath I followed from Morfa and the home of the Swans at the Liberty Stadium in Swansea, to the lake in the enterprise zone at Llansamlet, could in some places be mistaken for a more natural setting, if not rural.

Liberty Stadium at Morfa

It was a Sunday morning and although the length of the walk was only about 2.2 miles, it took me about 2 hours just to reach the lake at my halfway turning point. That is more because of field recording than photography but both played their part in slowing me down.

I’ll post some sound clips through the week but to start with, it was the structural patterns of stadium architecture and fence design that interested me.

If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.

Weobley Walkers

Towards the end of our Taste of Gower circular walk at Weobley Castle on the Gower we had one last area of open field to cross before the incline back up to the castle.

My parents used to go on many walks with a group that called themselves jokingly “The Wobbly Walkers”. This was a reference to their average age I guess, but the group of walkers at Weobley Castle, which could perhaps be called the Weobley Walkers, has quite a wide age range, with people joining in from many different walking clubs and other community groups of people sometimes described as “hard to reach”.

The Taste of Gower programme of walks organised by Steve Lancey from the Gower Landscape Partnership and Mike Aspland, has done an excellent job of encouraging people to get out and explore a part of the Swansea area in South Wales that, though well known, can be hard to reach for some people. To this end there is also an excellent bus service that is specifically aimed at enabling access to this Area of Natural Beauty (AoNB) and its Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) as well as encouraging walking, cycling, etc. in other areas of Swansea Bay.

Taste of Gower walkers

footpath incline

 

My Walk this Week – Bay Campus

My walk this week took me round Swansea University’s new Bay Campus on the seafront along the eastern approach to Swansea. It was a sunny(ish) Saturday morning and the place was fairly quiet. As I strolled through the large open spaces between the buildings I thought “this is very nice and new in the sunshine, but they’re not going to like it much when the bad weather blows in!”

The Great Hall, Swansea University Bay CampusI started my photography of the walk on the seaward side of the campus and found, down on the beach looking out across Continue reading

Canal People

There are many people that use Swansea Canal – perhaps not on the canal itself, but alongside it on the towpath. Walkers, joggers and cyclists – adults and children alike enjoy many aspects of the canal. And then of course there are the birds, ducks, dogs and cats and no doubt a million insects too.

The Swansea Canal Society clearly do an excellent job of taking care of the canal as well as restoring it where possible.

At this point on my walk this week, I was passing Coed Gwilym Park. The canal has left the industrial area of Clydach with The Mond Nickel Works and is heading up the valley towards Pontardawe. The houses and gardens have changed, Spring is starting to show  and the canal society is advertising itself and looking for new members.

Swansea Canal art work

Canal Sounds

If viewing this in an email, to see the sound player you will need to visit the blog – please click the post title to view the full post.