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

heavy weather

My Walk this Week 161 – North Gower Walk

My walk this week looks back at a walk on the North Gower coast and the expansive and beautiful salt marshes of the Loughor Estuary. The walk was originally taken as part of the “Taste of Gower” project in 2015.

Salt marshes, North Gower

Sheep graze the marsh grass and herbs from day to day and when the tides cover the the greenery, they move on and off the marshes via “causeways” such as the one above.

The sense of space and the distortion of perspective gives the place a strange, unreal feeling. Distance is difficult to judge and I suspect you would need to be careful of the incoming tide if unused to the area.Continue reading

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

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

churchyard railings

My Walk this Week 144 – One Way To the Marsh Churchyard

My walk this week is a one way walk across our local marsh to the old St Teilo’s churchyard. I have walked this route many times before, and posted about it, but on this occasion the marsh grass is taller than I have seen it for several years – and they are my favourite aspect of the marsh.

dancing marsh grass

Bending as it does in the wind, and curving round to see the sun, it appears to me to be dancing – a busy chorus line of uniform activity responding to the elements and singing in their dry rustley voices as the breeze shuffles them together. Continue reading

patchwork landscape

My Walk this Week 142 – Circular Hill Walk

For my walk this week I started out early, when it was still quite dark, but this circular hill walk was really very enjoyable, even though the sun never managed to break through and the whole day was dim.

Early morning light

The day was just beginning for birds and builders alike and these start-of-the-day sounds accompanied me as I climbed Graig Fawr. Up on top the wind took over and gently buffeted me as I looked through the grasses and old brown bracken to the Loughor EstuaryContinue reading

Distant Gower from The Mawr

My Walk this Week 141 – Exploring Down from The Mawr

On my walk this week I went exploring a footpath I have passed on top of The Mawr on many occasions but never stopped for a closer look – until now.

Woodland ravine path

Looking across to the Gower Peninsula in the distance, I stood and enjoyed the wind as it gently swirled around me and brought the sound of skylarks to my ears. Setting off down an old moss covered farm track, it wasn’t longContinue reading

red shattered rock

Coastal Curiosities 1 – Arranged and Sculpted Naturally

This week I am focusing on some of the coastal curiosities I found along my walks in Scotland last month. The wind and sea had been sculpting, as they naturally do, but people were also evident in the arrangements they left behind in the form of what appeared to me like a miniature straggling sea defence. A sea defence that was set higher on the beach than the highest tide level, at least for a few days, thus ensuring they would stay there for a while and allow me to photograph them in different lights.

miniature defences

The low sun in the evening also sculpted the appearance of the beach into a Martian landscape and the my daughter pointed me towards the Martian colours revealed in a rock formation split by erosion. This revealed a measure of timeContinue reading

ripples

Scottish Seas 3 – The Subtleties of Surface

The surface of the sea is constantly changing – colour, pattern, texture – it all depends, from moment to moment, on the changing conditions of light, wind, currents and the pull of the sun and moon.

surface colour

However rough or calm the sea is, the changing patterns on the surface of the water can hold my attention for a long time. The longer I look, the more subtleties I see and although there is an overall rhythm to the motion, that too changes gradually as the tide gently rises and falls against the rocks and seaweed – see the video below.

The longer you sit quietly, the less you are noticed byContinue reading

Uplands landscape

Punctuated By Ice at The Waterside

My walk this week has been around the lake at The Waterside – Felindre and seems to have been punctuated by ice. Indeed, the whole language and grammar of the posts has been dictated by the freezing icy conditions.

Icy Punctuation

Influenced as I am by the things I see and hear around me, I look at the light and shade, the patterns and textures, and I wonder what it would feel like to touch, to run my fingers along some of the surfaces of frozen water, hard ground lightly dusted with snow or old reeds and rushes from last year as they poke through the semi opaque sometimes mushy lookingContinue reading