valley fog

Sunlight, Sheep and Fog

Gaining the top of the hill on my walk this week from fog to sunlight, I was followed by a flock of hopeful sheep looking expectantly at me – I suspect the farmer was due or perhaps the sheep though he was overdue!

Goppa sheep

My route took me past familiar objects both natural and man made. The rhododendrons perhaps have an element of both – they are natural but not native to the UK and can take over a whole hillside as they have in this location.Continue reading

overhanging

Tree Ghoul in the Gloom

The darkness of my walk this week in the rain provided me with a creepy atmosphere from time to time. This tree was one of those  presenting itself as a ghoul in the gloom of the woodland as I climbed the footpath to Swiss Valley Reservoir.

Tree Ghoul in the Gloom

Even the more open areas of the valley floor were gloomy and what light there was created and aged effect on the subtly coloured branches of an orchard.Continue reading

My Walk this Week – Late Afternoon, York University

While away over New Year I enjoyed an exploratory walk around York University campus. This isn’t the campus! I set out rather later in the afternoon than I had realised and it was only seeing how low the sun was in the sky as I walked towards the university that I realised the time.

The low light levels didn’t help my photography but there would be no point in presenting bright shots of a walk in dim light.

Late afternoon sunlight

Continue reading

Nature and Power Patterns Against a Blue Sky

The patterns I saw on my walk this week were wonderful. Both natural and man made, these objects were clear and crisp against the most significant aspect of the views – the blue sky. Whether it was the near fractal patterns of a bare tree or the electrical loops of power lines, the bright blue sky made them stand out and I was in awe at the complex beauty around me.

tree against blue sky

Water Under the Bridge

The old iron railing on the footbridge which I crossed on my walk this week will be familiar to those who saw my posts a couple of weeks ago about my previous walk on this route. I wasn’t originally going to include the sound clip below because it’s just water flowing under the bridge – but then on listening to it again, I changed my mind!

The sounds of that flow have three distinct stages: the first part has a lot of bubbly texture to it, including trickles and tickles, gloops and bloops, splashes and plashes (in preference to more technical language), the second is more even with those highlights less noticeable, and the ambience of the third stage has greater weight on the right hand speaker but with a gloopy base returning in the background – and then the sound fades to my footsteps climbing a dry leafy slope.

cwm-dulais-16

Water Under the Bridge

Wildness Becalmed

The wind that produced the wildness in the growth of this tree was becalmed on this day of our holiday in Scotland. The wild hawthorn trees that take this form are wonderful descriptions of the weather and the bleak looking hill in the background are not a place you would wish to be in foul weather.

But this day was completely still and everything in the landscape and seascape held a tranquility and peace that for all we knew could have been the precursor to a storm.

calm-day-3

Lonely Atmosphere

The sun was trying hard on my walk this week, to lift, or at least thin the thick mist that surrounded me and obscured so many details of the landscape. The foreboding atmosphere of the holloway footpath in yesterday’s post is repeated here with this naked tree at the edge of a field.

tree and fog

But as becomes apparent in the photos below, the mist is also influenced by a breeze and is therefore constantly moving. Continue reading

Fences and Walls

Heading back down the hill each day of my walk this week drew my attention to the walls and fences at one point or another along the route.

More images from this walk can be seen on Instagram and/or the StillWalks Facebook page and Twitter.

Goppa-20

Icons of the Hill and some Pronunciation

Graig Fawr (pronounced Grige (with both “g”s hard) and Vower (as in power) and translates from the Welsh, more or less, as “big rock”)) . . . and before I forget, Happy St David’s Day from Wales 🙂

My walk up Graig Fawr soon brought me to a few things that seem to me to typify this particular area of my local uplands, the western edge of The Mawr (remember the “Fawr” pronunciation), the upland area north of Swansea.

One is the solitary tree and another is the bracken. There are large areas of bracken on the side of Graig Fawr and its companion hill, Cefn Drum (pronounced with a hard “C” and the “f” as a “v” and Drum is pronounced Drim). The colours and textures of the bracken are always there and now and then you will spot a single small tree growing out of its midst.

I have taken a number of photographs of these “icons” in different conditions and certainly the light is always different, but today the bracken had a particularly strong red tinge to its brown in some areas where it lay with the morning frost gradually thawing.

bare Graig Fawr tree

bracken

And then there was this water system manhole! I am not sure what the underground workings of this system are, but this access point with the slab of concrete and a glass jar laying on top of it and the concrete signage made me think of a grave with its headstone and the last flowers that were left in a jar, now disappeared.

Graig Fawr manhole

Lonesome Tree Pointing The Way

This is not the first shot I have taken of this tree but that is, perhaps, hardly surprising – it is an obvious subject that, standing out against the skyline, almost begs to photographed.

As I approached the top of the hill my walk seemed directed by the tree which appears from this angle to be pointing the way to the cairn in the distance. On the way back down it also seems to be pointing the way whereas unreality it is just telling us the direction of the prevailing wind.

Cefn Drum 3

Cefn Drum 3

Click on the first thumbnail to view larger and in sequence – you can listen to the sound clip above at the same time. It’s the same clip I posted yesterday but as it represents the same section of the walk I thought it the best one to use.

lone tree