Alpacas Looking On

Having crossed the first couple of fields on my walk this week with the Taste of Gower walkers at Weobley Castle, we came upon one with three very curious and stylish looking alpacas. I am familiar with the curiosity of alpacas from my visits to The Waterside, but these three were no less entertaining for that.

Alpacas

The Taste of Gower walks are well organised and usually have three walk leaders making sure that everyone is accounted for. As the organiser of the walks, Steve Lancey was sharing his lead with both mid-group and back markers and though trailing a bit at times in order to do some field recording, I managed to remain close to the slower members of the group.

Gates, Wind and Walking

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Reaching the Source

This small group of people climbing the upper slopes of Pen y Fan in the Brecon Beacons, represent the Living Taff group with whom I was walking to find the sources of the River Taff. We are almost at the point where one of the highest trickles contributing to the river surfaces.

On our way there we passed others climbing the final stage of Corn Du, the peak next to Pen y Fan  and another popular outing for people to take on a sunny Sunday in South Wales.

Climbing Pen y Fan

Having got the evidence, so to speak, we climbed back down this steepest part of the climb to the footpath and continue on round between the two peaks to look for the second source of the river, the Taf Fawr.

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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

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My Walk this Week 20 – Bay Walk

My walk this week sees more changeable weather. There were plenty of other people walking and running in spite of the wintry wet conditions which says something for the attraction of Swansea Bay. Fortunately, from the point of view of photography, what can feel like miserable weather for walking, can produce some “atmospheric” images.

Looking out for those shots can also help with the mental attitude to walking in this weather and as it didn’t continue raining for too long, the walk was in fact very refreshing and entertaining.

It wasn’t just the able bodied who were using the promenade – having said that, take a close look and you will see that the runner below is clearly very able bodied!

Swansea Bay

If you listen carefully to the sound clip below, you should hear the intermittent tone of Mumbles lighthouse in the distance as well as footsteps and an intrepid cyclist.

Windy Seafront

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Neptune’s Audience

Last Friday I went down to Blackpill in Swansea Bay to meet a group of people doing Nordic Walking and try it for the first time myself. I wanted to try this for a few months but my prompt to do so was as much to do with the StillWalks project, Sights and Sounds of the Countryside as my personal interest – the project still needs further funding and if anyone is interested in helping out with this, here is the crowd funding link – 7 days to go to the deadline for funding.

The walkers are a group organised through Mentro Allan and I wanted to meet them in order to make first contact with carers in the area. We would like the community group on the Sights and Sounds project to be made up of carers from rural wards in Swansea.

Neptune’s Audience! Arriving early in the bay and having brought my camera, I got a few shots off before others arrived. Here is the reason for the title of this blog post 🙂 Other photos can be seen on Flickr.

oystercatchers

Neptune’s Audience

oystercatchers

Caught on the Hop!

oystercatchers

. . . and on the wing.

 

 

Mumbles Promenade and Street Photography

Some people get nervous, uncomfortable, even angry when they see a photographer taking shots in the street or other busy public place. However, as I walked along Mumbles Promenade at the start of the Gower Peninsula the other day, I not only had my camera but also my sound kit with its “dead cat” furry cover on the microphone windshield. It’s the dogs that take exception to this, wondering no doubt, what strange creature it is.

People tend to be more interested and wonder what programme I am making and smile or ask if I am from the BBC. I am not sure that I will be able to get a StillWalk from this impromptu stroll along the promenade but if I need to do a full production day there, I’ll make sure I have the StillWalks logo printed on my T-shirt first.

RODE Blimp Windshield

The interest of dogs in the “Dead Cat” is understandable!

And here on the blog is some of the sound recorded or you can hear these and others on SoundCloud.

Mumbles Promenade-1

Mumbles Promenade-3

Mumbles Promenade and Oystermouth Castle

Mumbles Promenade - the feet have it!

Mumbles Promenade – a popular place for joggers!

Mumbles Promenade

Mumbles Promenade – a popular place for children

Mumbles Promenade

Mumbles Promenade – a popular place for cyclists!

Mumbles Promenade

Mumbles Promenade – a popular place for walking

Mumbles Promenade

Mumbles Promenade – a popular place for walking