Landscape overview

My Walk this Week 158 – Uphill from The Waterside

My walk this week is a welcome return to my friends Sue and Steve at The Waterside in a nearby Welsh valley where they have a beautiful lake and a fascinating herd of alpacas. I wanted to climb uphill from the lakeside to get more of an overview of the valley and the landscape around it. On this particular morning I had spent my time doing admin and taking a break in such a relaxing location was just what I needed.

bluebells on the hillside

Hillside by The Waterside

So after an enjoyable lunch on the First Friday open day in May I took myself off to look at the bluebells and blossom of the hill on the far side of the lake. The sun shone intermittently and 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

My Walk this Week 150 – Weathering at the Botanic Gardens

My walk this week is at the National Botanic Garden of Wales where there was some weathering they could not control. Outside the Great Glasshouse the sun and rain, heat and cold have taken their toll on this metal plant label and the paint has cracked and peeled into a most interesting, map-like pattern.

weathered label

Inside the Great Glasshouse they can and do control the weather conditions for the different parts of the world represented there. So while there are times of year when everything in there seems so busy with growth, there are always fantastic colours, patterns and textures to enjoy whatever the time of year.Continue reading

Looking south from Pen y Fan

My Walk this Week 146 – Looking Back at the Mountains

My walk this week is one from the past and came to mind because the Welsh mountains it illustrates came up in a recent conversation. I hope to visit Pen-y Fan in the Brecon Beacons again later this year – or if not that mountain, perhaps a less busy location nearby. The images and sound clip were originally posted in May 2016.

Original Brecon Road

The sounds in the clip below are classic for this mountain area, and that includes the voices of other people. Pen-y Fan, being the highest of the Brecon Beacons and fairly accessible, attracts a lot of visitors, both local and from further afield. Continue reading

sunrise

My Walk this Week 143 – Up Hill and Down Valley

My walk this week is another early morning one – the moon was setting as I left the house and as I climbed up hill, the sun was just beginning to show its colours reflected on the clouds. I was on this hill, Cefn Drum, last week but on this occasion I was walking in the opposite direction and returned along its opposite side, looking down on Cwm Dulais.

early morning sky

The day promised to be brighter than last week but the clouds kept intervening and the light kept changing accordingly. It was still a beautiful walk and I had not covered part of the route before. Having always looked at the rocky ridge of Twyn Tyle from the far side of the valley,Continue reading

Colourful landscape

My Walk this Week 137 – Quiet Quarry Walk

My walk this week takes place at first light in an old, quiet quarry and its surrounding landscape. The rocks were black with the wet weather and to begin with the atmosphere felt quite oppressive. However, things lightened and brightened as I ascended to the upper edge of the quarry and into a very mossy woodland.
black quarry rock

The soundscape down in the dark confines of the quarry was still and my footsteps echoed in the amphitheatre of hewn rock, the small birds chirped and the crows cawed. Once I arrived at the top edge of the steep, dark slabs and could look over the Welsh landscape,Continue reading

small herd of goats in forest

My Walk this Week 134 – Surprised By Goats

Click the play button and then the first image to listen and look through the features of my walk this week. It’s another local forest and while it may be true that all forests and woodland consist largely of trees, they are also all quite different. One thing was certainly unexpected on this walk and that was the goats! Looking at the sharpness of their horns I decided it would be best not to confront them but to negotiate a more diplomatic route through the trees.

Forest Walk Soundscape

Starting from the lower reaches of the woods on the edge of 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

Estuary sunset

My Walk this Week 132 – Estuary Sundown and Soundscape

My walk this week at sundown in Llanelli Bay on the Loughor Estuary allowed me to look out across the mudflats and listen to the gentle ambience of the place as well as enjoy the colours and reflections of the golden sunlight.

mud flat reflections

Like the background sound of a light aircraft on my walk last week in Swansea Bay, there was the almost constant sound of vehicles on the mud and sand doing an unknown but seemingly specific task. However, it did not spoil the soundscape and the calls of various birds mingled with those of children and excited dogsContinue reading

estuary expanse

My Walk this Week 132 – Another Walk Another Bay

My walk this week is from another bay not far from where I was walking last week and though it is quite different, it is just as expansive as the last one. Llanelli Bay on the Loughor Estuary in Wales provides just about as long a walk as you would like but I stuck to the eastern end of it thinking there might be fewer people there.

evidence of activity

Please understand that I am not desperate to get away from people (I like people really) but I also like my solitary walks. You will be ale to hear in my soundscape for this week (to be posted as usual on Friday) that if there were not crowds of people, the sounds of those that were there, particularly children and dogs, carried easily in across the mud flats and sand. Continue reading