Posts Tagged aberfforest

Looking a bit closer at my regular haunts…

Hello Readers,

Not entirely sure where you have all gone, as my dashboard on here says that I haven’t been all that popular of late..strange, as I had some people say that they had visited, unless it was all lies?! At this rate, if I had my funeral soon, I’d be the only attendee!! Please continue to drop in, if only to poke fun at my limited portfolio, however, I enjoy taking the pictures, so I guess that’s the main thing. However, feel free to challenge me, I dare you 🙂

In this “episode”, I visit a number of my usual haunts but find, if I look a little closer, I see a few interesting things, which I hope you will also find interesting in turn. Up at the top of the Aberfforest waterfall, it did me good to lengthen the shutter speed taking this image, as I found a slow little whirlpool off to one side that made a nice effect on the finished image….

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Yes, I was standing in the middle of the river….

Now, this following image doesn’t exactly give the appearance of looking closely, but I thought I’d include it for the fact that it was a nicely framed Spring picture; you will note the wild garlic on the right and up beside the waterfall (yes, you can eat it…but I’d let you go first, however it smells lovely even just stood around it) and catkins on the trees above the water….

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Spring at Aberfforest, the sound of tumbling water and the smell of….garlic

It was when I was buzzed by a little brown bird on getting closer to the falls that I saw it. A nest. Well, a hole of sorts built out of mud tucked in the rocks right next to the rushing water. Brave little thing…it must be pretty deaf as well!

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You can see here how close the Dipper lives to water that would drown it. Very brave

On returning home, I found that this brave little birdy was a Dipper of the european variety, of course. First time I have seen one and it must be so proud of the spot it has, as it’s a doozy. I’ve always considered the water here a bit dirty, but I think that this is proof that this is not the case as birds like this surely wouldn’t be able to feed. Amazing little things too; mostly, they perch on rocks and feed at the edge of the water, but they often also grip the rocks firmly and “walk” down them until submerged. They then search underwater for yummy dipper food; they can also “swim” with their wings like little penguins! Impressive. Oh, just to clarify, I wasn’t able to get a picture of it…waaaaay too fast. I did see the nest is still there this year though, so there’s time.

Along the way on the mossy stumps and debris I found some interesting fungus as well. The waterfall creates a microcosm of sorts, because there is moss, wild garlic and stuff here like you wouldn’t believe and you don’t see elsewhere…

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Feel free to name the fungus….

Closer to home, I was outside checking out the sunset in the evening when I saw some bird muck on the door, which isn’t unusual being near the coast and with seagulls passing overhead regularly…so, I go to wipe it off when I realised with some controlled horror that there is a baby spider disco happening on the door frame!

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Eeeek! Spiders massing against us. Luckily, I scattered this group in time….you’re welcome

Now, I don’t mind spiders, as long as they aren’t big enough to wink at me or anything, but the sight of these little things running off in all directions gave me the heeby jeebies!

My nerves under control, I concentrated on the sunset and have a couple to share with you on the end of this post which I thought were pretty good. The first I included because of my love of contrails and cirrus clouds. Difficult to tell but I think that this is a few contrails (common over us, as we get trans-atlanic planes over us daily) pulled apart by high winds way up above. Whatever, it’s pretty sweet…

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Contrail sunset. I loves it

Lastly, I do like a mixed cloudscape but a mixed cloudscape at sunset when it’s all at the stage it turns red, even better. The clouds lower down look just like mist arriving from the hills, maybe it was, but I can’t remember the weather on this evening. Enjoy.

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My favourite spot for dusks in Summer…because of pictures like this

Well, there we have it for another post. Sorry for the delay, due to unforeseen circumstances, but I hope you all still take the time to visit again soon, look through the archive, let people who love sunsets and nature know of my work even.

Until next time, all the best.

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Further Winter wetness (Part 1)

Hello All

Firstly, had an email a few days back from a lady in Germany asking for a high resolution copy of one of my pictures. Pretty cool…I have gone international. It was an image of Newgale I had taken some months ago and, so it seems, she had stayed in a house that you could see in the picture and wanted to get it printed up in a poster and hang it on her wall as a souvenir. Pretty cool huh? I have asked her to take a snap of the picture “in situ” when it’s printed so I can be satisfied it’s in a good home! See, it’s that easy. Is there a piccy you like on here? Ask for a copy, don’t be shy!

Anyway, on to this post. I’m sat here with a banging headache after another busy day at work (75% sickness) and it’s pouring with rain outside. So, this is Summer. Hmm. Seems, according to the Met Office that this will continue for the next few days, but who knows, we may have a bit of helpful wind that pushes it over London or something. They have been complaining it’s too hot lately…

On the damp theme, seems I took quite a few trips out during the wet winter I spoke of and this post covers my favourite waterfall and a trip to another waterfall that was turned into….well, not a waterfall. You’ll see. Anyhow, off I trotted up to Newport after these windy days, not really taking into account the previous conditions, bar wearing my wellies. Good thing too, I put a foot wrong on the first stile and went into liquid mud, just below the top of one boot! However, along from there on the main path, things got a little…tricky

The forest near Aberfforest after a battering

The forest near Aberfforest after a battering

As you can see, fresh snapped trees. Looks like someone had done some rudimentary clearing with a chainsaw too, thank goodness, but I was still having to steps over broken branches and dodge fallen ivy. As I got to the main part of the falls, I even had to climb over a fallen tree and then limbo under another…not amusing carrying a camera bag and tripod. Mind you, the water shooting along the river bed made for a lovely smooth slow shutter picture….

The air was so still, it made for a lovely smooth picture

The air was so still, it made for a lovely smooth picture

The waterfall itself was a lovely one as well. I have seen the falls in various states over the years, from a trickle in the Summer to a raging Amazonian torrent full of mud in the Winter. On a scale of 1 to 10 for size on this occasion, I’d give this an 8. Mind you, notice the mini falls off the the left? Never seen that before, there must have been LOADS of water for a period and that was the point of least resistance…

Water, water, everywhere!

Water, water, everywhere!

Further down, much the same story. Once again, the stepping stones had been washed out, apart from 2 that looked a bit iffy, so I crossed further up where it was more shallow. As you can see from the foreground and off to the right, more fallen ivy and branches freshly cut.

If they weren't inanimate, I'd feel sorry for those stepping stones!

If they weren’t inanimate, I’d feel sorry for those stepping stones!

Onto a completely new place now, Cenarth. I have been here and posted the odd blog from there as it’s a very picturesque wide falls. The village is also home to the Welsh Coracle Centre; a coracle is a round raft that was used as a form of transport by fisherman in Wales some time ago. Well, suffice to say, the centre wasn’t getting the coracle out today! If you bear in mind that the flat area to the left is a car park usual 10 or so feet higher that the water, you may have an idea how much wet stuff was flying about…

I'm sure I parked my car here.....

I’m sure I parked my car here…..

To try to give an impression of the amount of water, I took just a simple automatic image across to the Coracle Centre. This is usually low and calm enough to set a raft made from wood and leather on…hmmmm

Coracle ride anyone? No?

Coracle ride anyone? No?

This image is pointing up stream. Just a fast river? Well, yes, but that area on the left is actually the main footpath! I considered that ropes and waders would be ideal for this route for the time I was there…

I was on a platform above the water taking this, don't worry...

I was on a platform above the water taking this, don’t worry…

A teeny bit downstream now, this image was taken from the very wet car park. I must admit to have a wry smile on my face though, as this area is own privately by a local gent who charges (way too much) for a space there and you could see him, very boot faced, watching all of his gravel being washed away! I dare say he hasn’t replaced or repaired any of it but charges the same. Anyway, this is of the picnic area…the rocks aren’t usually surrounded by water and it’s possible to sit on them and have a sarnie. Not today!

The power of water can be quite sobering...

The power of water can be quite sobering…

The amount of water coming downstream into the village even made some local residents get their spades out to protect their property, here you can see a rudimentary dam..

“Dam” that river, it’s a real pain.

Well, there’s part 1. Yes, there will be a part 2. If I can find the relevant news story on the BBC, I will post a link to it on the next blog, as I will be posting the flooding of Newgale, where the sea wall was breached and a bus was washed off the road! Great excitement. Stay tuned…

Thanks for dropping in and remember, like a picture? Post a comment, I reply to every one and it doesn’t cost you a penny! Bargain. See you soon.

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Spring flooding in Pembrokeshire

Hello All,

I shan’t go into why I haven’t been here but I return. The weather’s lovely here, the sun is shining (although not correctly forecast) for the umpteenth time. I’m on a long weekend so I thought I would post a few pictures of one of my more interesting forays before I go out for a spin in the car.

I say interesting, as there is a scientific twang to some of the pictures, although I did manage to get my usual arty spin on even those! First, I shall start off with the nicer pictures…unusually by the way, this post covers a few areas I went to over the space of a week or so so excuse the skipping around.

One of my favourite haunts again. I know….booooring. However, as it had been very wet over the Winter/Spring, the showing of wild garlic was pretty massive. In fact, as you can see, where there wasn’t a path, there was wild garlic. All you have to do was brush against and you had wafts of garlic. It was very nice. I can only presume the smell was stronger as the flowers had died off and the bulbs were storing more energy to over winter. Or something.

Wild Garlic! Breathe deeply enough and you will suddenly speak with a ridiculous French accent

Wild Garlic! Breathe deeply enough and you will suddenly speak with a ridiculous French accent

As it had been so damp of late and this area is quite densely covered with a tree canopy, the logs that are around had quite considerable fungi growth on them, like this little chap. Funny, as I saw it and the colour, I thought if you picked it off and ate it, it would taste nutty. Weird….some subconcious link between brown and nuts?

By the way, with wild garlic and this kind of fungi, please don’t pick or eat. I’m sure you can if you know what you are doing but I’d personally steer clear!

Mmmm...nutty. Or the causes of much illness...not sure which

Mmmm…nutty. Or the causes of much illness…not sure which

Now on to the arty stuff. There’s my favourite waterfall, I had my circular polarizer in my pocket and a full battery so it seemed rude not to take a slow shutter shot. Actually, this gave me quite a headache. The sun kept coming out and going in, so most of the images I took were a bit screwed up as the settings were all wrong, so this is the best of a bad bunch. I was glad the stones showed up under the water though.

The waterfall that is a constant draw for me and a bit more wild garlic in the lower right

The waterfall that is a constant draw for me and a bit more wild garlic in the lower right

Now to the science kind of bit. As I mentioned before, there had been some considerable rain the few weeks before, pretty heavy too, the kind that creates a mist 6 inches above anything it hits. I think some areas of soil and such had pretty much waved a white flag! Upstream from the main waterfall, some trees had fallen and partly blocked the watercourse….

A natural dam just upstream from where I take all my pictures. Some pretty big logs there

A natural dam just upstream from where I take all my pictures. Some pretty big logs there

A little downstream, the stepping-stones had been undermined and were now all hickledy-pickledy. Luckily for me, I came prepared and had my wellies 🙂

If someone was going to walk across, I would have videoed them to post it on Youtube labelled FAIL!

If someone was going to walk across, I would have videoed them to post it on Youtube labelled FAIL!

Even further down, the beach that joins up with the Coastal Path had a fair portion of bank that had become exposed and was showing off its underwear for all to see. How rude! Nice slate, though.

The bank looks very soft, so hardly surprising that it had given up

The bank looks very soft, so hardly surprising that it had given up

In another place I often frequent, just along from Wolfscastle, there had been a very impressive bursting the banks of the little river there. You can see the normal course and the almost doubling of the width during the height of the flood. Impressive.

Looks horrible here but I went there the other week and no harm done. The nettles are as tall as me and a small nomadic tribe have taken up residence (the last bit's a lie by the way)

Looks horrible here but I went there the other week and no harm done. The nettles are as tall as me and a small nomadic tribe have taken up residence (the last bit’s a lie by the way)

Why, I ask myself, wasn’t I here to take some pictures when it was flooding? Oh well…maybe I don’t like getting wet. The way things are going with our Summers, it won’t be long until I get another chance! I shan’t go preaching about global warming or all that rubbish; my personal opinion is that we are such an insignificant spot on the planet that most of these things would happen in some form or other anyway, it’s just nobody would be recording them. Ooooh…political.

I shall leave you on that note, please feel free to put me “right ” (i.e give your opinion too) in the comments if you feel you want to. See you soon!

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