Category Archives: Out and About

Soaking up some rays….

What fabulous sunshine today.  I real treat for the middle of October and the opportunity to soak up a few rays on Hayling Beach.  Someone even went topless (it wasn’t me!)

Always love Hayling Island, but it was extra specially lovely today as the sunshine was so warm, the water clear and and the light sparkling.

Flo is sporting her new hair cut and clearly enjoyed the expanse of beach and getting her feet wet.  Topped off with a picnic on the breakwater and an ice-cream… unexpected delight.

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Filed under Out and About

Bedlam Bottom

Walk from Ellisfield via the delightfully named Bedlam Bottom, near (would you believe) Farleigh Wallop.  An 8 mile varied walk with plenty of interest, including dung beetles, short-tailed voles and a run away straw bail.

Didn’t meet, see or hear a single person all day….at one point we thought there must be something going on that we didn’t know about.  Doesn’t matter that everyone else wasn’t out enjoying the sunshine and fresh air….all the more for us.  Picked over 1kg of blackberries on the way back which will soon disappear.

First crop of runner beans for dinner….yum!  and more courgettes (and I have already seen another 3 on there which will need eating tomorrow…not complaining, but if I turn into a courgette!!)

Farmer Palmer...

Anything hiding in the wood pile?

Phew...think I'll just have a quick sit down in the shade...

Glorious rolling fields that have just been harvested

The one that got away....."humm....where did you come from"?

Great texture on this water trough

'Preston Oak Hills' Large old copse full of twisted oak trees.

Dung Beetle, scuttling away with a large lump of fresh dung to roll.

Short Tailed Vole (my my...what big fingers you have!!)

A blackberry bonanza. Most blackberry are not quite ripe, but these were on the edge of a large south facing field.

Enchanted pond in Ellisfield

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Not a contour for miles….

Walk on the beach at Bracklesham Bay, West Sussex.   The cloud seemed to forming above our heads, although we didn’t get wet luckily.  1/2 mile out to sea and we would have been basking in sunshine.  The Isle of Wight was certainly soaking up some rays.

Walk made all the better by some home-made egg custard tart (another first), nice one Delia, but think the pastry needs some attention.

I’m sure one of the houses directly on the beach was featured in C4 Grand Designs.  The one with 2 arty blokes who lived together and had a house full of amazing collectable contemporary artwork.  Should have taken a picture but at the time it seemed a bit weird to be photographing someone elses house.  I’m sure if I watch More4 for a few weeks, it will be repeated…….

Mountain dog didn’t need her hill climbing legs today.  There wasn’t  a contour to be seen in any direction for miles and not one marked on the side of the map at all.  The fields of corn, wheat, potatoes are vast, as were the courgettes…and I thought we were being kept busy harvesting courgettes off only 5 plants…..blimey, these fields had a troupe of EU ravers collecting the booty.

Now they are putting the growers name/farm and location on the packaging of vegetables in supermarkets I will have to look out for them.

Brought home some strand line treasure which I thought I could use to incorporate some texture into my pots.  Bit of wood with holes in it, remenants of a battered plastic bread crate, and a rusty bit of steel.  Will these objects look so appealing when sitting in the Potting Shed rather than poking out of the pebbles and seaweed?  Julian just raises eyebrows…junk indeed….but when his back is turned, I tuck it in the side of the rucksack….ha!

Egg Custard Tart....oh Yes!

Not a contour for miles!

Not in this direction either. You can just see Selsey Bill on the right hand side, in the distance. (Thought I had cut it off....but it sneaked in there)

Courgettes Galore!

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Maryport Slag!

Just got round to writing a post on visit to Maryport.  The trip was primarily to walk the dog, but it turned out to be an interesting find.  The waste from the blast furnaces (built in 1784) was clearly visible along the stretch of coast, where the slag was poured directly onto the beach.  Research into the specific blast furnaces has proved unfruitful as they were overshadowed by the industry at Workington and also the ship building in Maryport, however I did discover that they used limestone (a sedimentary rock composed largely of the mineral calcite or calcium carbonate, CaCO3), as a flux (lowers melting point), a constituent in some glaze recipes.  I will have to investigate this further…

Picked up some interesting pieces of slag with iron and coke in them, which at some point I will try to incorporate into a pot/glaze

Layers of slag waste from the blast furnace

Remains of a fire brick from the blast furnace embedded in the slag. From what I can make out it was made at Broughton brick works.

More layers...

Nice little hut on at the port, where we just caught a fishing boat unloading it's catch, lots of skate, prawns and a few unfortunate lobsters.

Liked this turquoise.....boat was on its last legs, but at least it was a nice colour...


Filed under Inspiration, Out and About

Avoiding the Masses

Lovely, peaceful walk this afternoon around Lower Wield and Bentworth.  Only saw 3 other people the whole time…..we stopped at the garden centre to get some canes for our runner beans….I think everyone else who ventured out and about today was in the Garden Centre cafe.   Made quick exit!

Wonderful rolling hills and farmland, chalk and flint geology, interesting woodlands.  Very enjoyable.

Which direction is the Byway?

Oil Seed Rape, the UK's answer to olive oil....humm.....

Blimey...who lives down this enormous hole?

Chalk and Flint Cob. I was interested to see what would happen if I put a chunk of flint in the kiln. Afterall, it is a component of some glazes. Julian reckons it will explode.....thinking that maybe I shouldn't try it...

Very Hairy Lichen.....Very fresh air..

I wonder how......

Big nobbly tree

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‘Ugly Ducklings’

Walking down the canal lately, the male swan has been ferociously on-guard as the lady swan sat patiently on her nest.  To be fair, I don’t think he took too kindly to Flo launching herself in the pond, but at one point, all the spitting and hissing was so aggressive, I thought it best we leg it….quick.  They can have your arm off…..apparently!

Anyway great to see today that the signets (or ugly ducklings) have hatched, 6 I think, and they are now parading around on the canal.

Not the best picture, taken on my phone……but look at his tail feathers…..I wonder where the idea for ‘duck bum bowls’ came from?

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Generous Reward…

What a difference a day makes.  Beautiful skies today, perfect for going up mountains.  Chose to do a fabulous circular walk including Whiteside and Hopegill Head.  Steady ascent up Gasgale Gill, lunch at Coledale Hause and then up to Hobcarton Crag, across the ridge and back down Whin Ben.  The views from the summit were spectcular, really helped to orientate some of the places we have previously been.  First real mountains for Flo….after some aprehension….it turns out she is a real mountain goat!  Looking a bit pooped out now though….will defintiely sleep well, especially after three bowls of dinner…..

“This summit is a generous reward for the effort of reaching it” Alfred Wainright

Whiteside and Whin Ben from Lanthwaite Green

Bridge over Liza Beck

Gasgale Gill

Hurrah...I've found some snow

Gasgale Gill approaching Coledale Hause

Lunch Spot - Skiddaw with snow on, Outerside in foreground and Rowling End

Bit windy here! Eel Cragg behind

Great location for any more biscuits??

Still snow on approach to Sandhill

Grisdale Pike

Just to prove I was there....

Hopegill Head to Whiteside along the ridge

Looking out to Blindcrake....which means, we should be able to see where we've been from Dad's lounge window


The ascent from Gasgale Gill

Melbrek and Crummock Water

Loweswater can see where we've been from Dad's front window - Excellent!

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Filed under Lake District, Out and About