Category Archives: Landscape

Frosty fields, and Wetherlam

Monday 18th November 2019, 10.15am (day 3,007)

Frosty view to Wetherlam, 18/11/19

I worked on Sunday so I could walk today, Monday. I’m no idiot. There were reasons for this.

The picture is taken in the valley of Yewdale, north of Coniston in the Lake District. The fell in the background is Wetherlam. And an appearance for the moon, too — hiding away among a couple of similar little fluffy clouds, which is as aggressive as the sky got all day.

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The Kent estuary at Arnside

Saturday 16th November 2019, 11.55am (day 3,005)

Kent estuary, 16/11/19

Saturday, a day to chill out, and get out, and try to see the world at its best — or at least, certain localised bits of it. Arnside is a place that I have frequently admired from passing trains: they trundle over the estuary of the River Kent on a bridge that is behind me as I took this shot. Not long after this the tide came in with astonishing speed, you can literally see it moving up the sands; no wonder Morecambe Bay is so dangerous in that respect.

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Dusk on the Long Causeway

Wednesday 13th November 2019, 4.20pm (day 3,002)

Long Causeway clouds, 13/11/19

The nights draw in. Driving to Burnley over the tops, well before 5 and it’s still getting dark already. November can have its flashes of excellence now and again (I remember this walk up Bowfell for example), but it’s mostly a depressing month, don’t you think?

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Mountains/islands

Friday 1st November 2019, 3.15pm (day 2,990)

Mpuntain/islands, 1/11/19

I am speaking at a conference this weekend, so today was my first flight since the EasyJet Iceland debacle back in July. (Never¬†ever again, EasyJet.) Fortunately all went perfectly today. As to where I flew to — well, you can find that out tomorrow. The flight meant it was my first opportunity in those four months to get shots like this. All of Europe seemed to be covered in cloud today; only these peaks made it up above the grey. I don’t know exactly where this is, somewhere toward the eastern end of the Alps so maybe Austria or Slovenia, but this will have to join the list of locations in which I can’t even identify a country for certain.

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The River Forth

Wednesday 30th October 2019, 11.15am (day 2,988)

River Forth, 30/10/19

On my way home, visited the Wallace Monument in Stirling, built to commemorate William Wallace, Scottish hero (yeah yeah, Braveheart, Mel Gibson, etc.). Three things about it are steep — the stairs to the top, the walk up the hill to it, and the ¬£10.50 entry fee. These are just about compensated for by the view, however, which takes in the Ochils (where I walked yesterday), Stirling, the Highlands to the west and to the east, the valley of the River Forth. This is perhaps the least glamorous direction, but photographically the most interesting — today, at least.

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Ascending The Law

Tuesday 29th October 2019, 9.50am (day 2,987)

Ascending The Law, 29/10/19

I guess there’s all sorts of metaphorical and analogical interpretations which could be put on the title of this post, but it’s all literal — these people (and obviously, myself) were engaged this morning on the climb of the steep south slope of the hill known as The Law, just outside the little town of Tillicoultry, which is visible below. Why? On a day of glorious sunshine like this, why not?

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Walkers on Lingcomb Edge, above Buttermere

Monday 21st October 2019, 1.45pm (day 2,979)

Lingcomb Edge, 21/10/19

Lingcomb Edge is the north-western buttress of the fell of Red Pike, above Buttermere. As I took a shot of the broader panorama, I noticed the three walkers (I’m pretty sure there are three) way over there and zoomed in as much as I could. I like the way the viewpoint has formed the hills and moors behind into waves, curling around the contours of the land.

And no, I wasn’t at work today. If you’d seen the weather you’d understand why. I worked Sunday. Honest.

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Misty vista

Wednesday 16th October 2019, 10.10am (day 2,974)

Misty house view, 16/10/19

A couple of weeks at home loom, and today was spent entirely there. At least, for blog purposes, I do have things to look at out of the window — mist, and mast.

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Tennyson’s Lane

Sunday 13th October 2019, 10.50am (day 2,971)

Tennyson's Lane, 13/10/19

When I was growing up in Sussex there were many of these ‘sunken lanes’ around the place and I guess I never really gave them much thought. But seeing a track like this, embedded between two earthen banks, is a sign that the way is of great antiquity. Their sunken nature is not natural, it is the result of erosion, taking place as people and livestock use the track over hundreds and, probably, thousands of years, over and over.

While on a walk in the South Downs today (bagging a County Top), I turned a corner and was suddenly confronted by this most magnificent example. Actually I’m surprised the shot ended up with so much light in it, because to my eyes this was a dark, enclosed tunnel through the landscape, exactly the kind of place where you can picture Frodo and his mates hiding from the Black Rider early on in Lord of the Rings. It’s called Tennyson’s Lane in tribute to the poet who had a house nearby, and in 1905 Arthur Paterson wrote the following about it, words that are still true today:

Trees meet overhead, copsewood surrounds it, and later, it is hedged by high sandy banks thickly overgrown with plant and scrub; squirrels and rabbits, and all other small woodland creatures, disport themselves over it. It twists and turns, and to the stranger appears to lead nowhere in particular.

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High House Bank

Thursday 19th September 2019, 12.55pm (day 2,947)

High House Bank, 19/9/19

One last chance to get away from it all before teaching starts, and if one is going to get away, the Shap Fells, in the far east of the Lake District, is certainly the place to do this. Two days’ walking (of which today was the first), over 24 miles, and I saw more deer (three) than people (none). High House Bank is the easternmost Wainwright and rises attractively over the valley of Borrowdale below (this is not the Borrowdale you’ve heard of, by the way).

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