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[Me]

Touring Britain bit by bit with a pair of boots, a few bicycles, a lot of trains and a bag of lenses. I take pictures and then I write about them.

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abandoned places and things architecture bristol coastal cumbria dorset events highlands history industrial lake district lakes london mountains not the uk photo essays photography politics protests rural rural decay science scotland structures the north uk urban urban decay wales westcountry all tags


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Sun, 9 Mar 2014

Under the hills of Torridon

Beinn Eighe

There aren't many more stunning parts of the country than Torridon in Wester Ross on the coast of the Northwest Highlands.

Lochan an Iasgair

Ben Eighe

The steeply enclosed Glen Torridon, with its mountain river tumbling down from the Coulin Estate, and its mirror lochans like Lochan an Iasgair.

Lochan an Iasgair

Opening out to the sea loch, Loch Torridon, dotted with tiny fishing villages like Shieldaig and Diabaig and Torridon itself.

Shieldaig

Sheep attack!

Under the modestly named Torridon Hills; the long and slender Liathach and the silver-backed rocky Beinn Eighe.

Liathach

Glen Torridon

torridon trees

Balgy

Glen Torridon

Torridon

The Applecross coast road

Torridon

Loch Torridon

Torridon

The coast road

All standing above the rocky west coast.

Loch Torridon

Lochan an Iasgair

I should probably go back and climb some of the hills some day.

Kenmore Bay


[Tag] Tags: highlands, mountains, northwest highlands, rural, scotland, torridon hills, torridon, uk, wester ross


Sat, 7 Sep 2013

Autumn at Stourhead

Stourhead

I'm not sure why it has taken so long to do a post for Stourhead, the impressive landscape gardens at the source of the River Stour in south west Wiltshire.

Stourhead

Stourhead

I guess I was taken there so many times as a child that I've managed to avoid going back too many times since to take pictures.

Stourhead

But with autumn fast approaching, when the arboretum of international specimens will be looking its best...

Stourhead

bluebells

...and the classical follies reflected in the lake will be framed in reds and golds...

Stourhead

...I thought it might be time for it to feature on the blog.

Stourhead

Stourhead

Stourhead

Stourhead

Stourhead

Stourhead

Stourhead

Bristol Cross

Stourhead


[Tag] Tags: gardens, lakes, national trust, rural, stourhead, uk, westcountry, wiltshire


Sun, 9 Jun 2013

Crossing the Moorfoot Hills

Innerleithen

From where it flows into the Tweed at Innerleithin, a solitary road runs up alongside the Leithen Water Abhainn Leitheinn, the grey river and is soon enclosed in perfect round and green hills.

DSC_0342

Moorfoot Hills

It twists and turns and climbs northwards through these, the Moorfoot Hills, treading a path between Whitehope Law and Windlestraw Law.

Moorfoot Hills

Part of the Southern Uplands: a fine set of landscapes, but generally neglected by most outside of southern and central Scotland overshadowed by the more extreme geology of the Highlands, or by similar hill ranges in places more accessible from Britain's other centres of population.

Moorfoot Hills

Moorfoot Hills

Moorfoot Hills

The road summits one valley and drops into the next.

enclosure

Passing the now neglected circular drystone sheep stells that for several centuries provided the livestock in the hills with winter shelter from wind and drifting snow.

livestock pen

Moorfoot Hills

Then repeats the process, climbing again from this central valley of the Blackhope Water, a tributary of the Heriot, which cuts east through the hills.

DSC_0379

Past the windfarm on Peat Hill.

DSC_0389

turbines

Moorfoot Hills

Climbing high into the windswept moorland landscape.

Moorfoot hills

Before abruptly hitting the Esk Valley and the lowlands of Midlothian in a long straight steep scarp.

Moorfoot Hills

Moorfoot Hills

View Larger Map


[Tag] Tags: hills, moorfoot hills, roads, rural, scotland, scottish borders, southern uplands, uk


Fri, 1 Feb 2013

Lesser of The Lakes

Windermere

Windermere is famous as the largest of The Lakes in the English Lake District, and in England generally. Its also famously a beautiful place, flanked by the high fells of Langdale and pretty villages like Ambleside, celebrated in verse and on canvas by the romantics, and loved by the millions of tourists who have poured in since the Kendal and Windermere railway first brought the lake within reach of the masses.

Windermere

pier

Windermere

After several visits to the more northern lakes and fells without ever having been along to Windermere, I thought I better go take a look and see what the fuss was about. So after a trip to Keswick I took the bus down to Ambleside, intending to walk along the shore to Bowness and up the hill to the station.

Windermere

But it turned out that a walk along the shore wasn't possible, because Windermere is crap and walking near it is forbidden.

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Windermere

Perhaps I was just grumpy that day, but what could be seen of Windermere from beside the main road in the gaps between the trees and the dense forest of "keep out" signs didn't impress the way that Ullswater and Derwent Water do.

Windermere

View Larger Map


[Tag] Tags: crap places, cumbria, lake district, lakes, rural, uk, windermere


Sun, 6 Jan 2013

Edge of the Vale

Melcombe

In the summer I spent a few evenings and early mornings shooting the hills surrounding the valley of the River Stour the Blackmore Vale in North Dorset and South Somerset.

Blackmore Vale

Melbury Abbas

For much of the year, the clay and low limestone ridges of Thomas Hardy's vale of little dairies provide little to keep a landscape photographer occupied for long.

from Okeford Hill

But in the golden hour light, the steep scarp slopes of the chalk downs to the south and east can. The Dorset Downs in the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and Cranborne Chase in the Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs AONB all part of the extensive chalk formation that forms much of the upland and sea cliffs of southern England provide promontories, like Bulbarrow and Fontmell, and islands in the vale, like Hambledon and Duncliffe.

on Bulbarrow

Park Walk

And the more gently rising limestone that divides the Stour flowing south east to the English Channel from the Yeo, flowing north west to the Bristol Channel, dropping in its own scarp into the Somerset Levels, with its own peninsulas and islands at Corton Beacon and Cadbury Castle.

On Corton Hill

Sunrise at Corton Beacon

Melbury Hill

Train at Buckhorn Weston

Sydling Valley

Blackmore Vale

on Bulbarrow

Dorset Downs

bales

Dorset Downs

Cucklington

Fontmell Down

Blackmore Vale

These photos all taken in August and September 2012, but more can be found in the Dorset gallery.


[Tag] Tags: blackmore vale, dorset, downland, rural, somerset, uk, westcountry


Tue, 25 Dec 2012

Winter in Keswick

Castlerigg

In February 2010 I booked the train up to Penrith...

Latrigg

Sun, snow, sheep

only to break the bicycle I'd planned to take on the day before departure....

Skiddaw

so changed plans and walked everywhere in the snow around Keswick and Derwent Water, where the boat bus company fought to break the ice...

Windermere

Derwent Water

up over Walla Cragg and Latrigg in the blizzard, and through the fresh snow around the stones at Castlerigg...

Derwentwater

and got the double decker bus down to Windermere for the train home...

Latrigg

Ashness Bridge

Skiddaw

Sheep, shadows, and snow on Skiddaw

snowstorm and sunlight

Windermere

The squirrel was a lucky catch in the woods below Ashness Bridge.

squirrel!


[Tag] Tags: cumbria, lake district, lakes, mountains, rural, snow, the north, uk, weather, winter


Sun, 21 Oct 2012

The standing stones of Machrie Moor

Machrie Moor

On the west side of Arran the "Scotland in miniature" island of the Firth of Clyde you might find a gateway, half hidden in high hedges, with a sign indicating the path to Machrie Moor.

Machrie Moor

Machrie Moor

The track winds through the sheep fields and scrubland, and past a small and slightly mediocre fenced-off stone circle.

Machrie Moor

To a little yard of part-ruined stone barns.

Machrie Moor

Machrie Moor

And thence to the great array of neolithic structures, from clumps of squat granite boulder circles to triplets of tall sandstone megaliths.

Machrie Moor

All set in the wide valley of the Machrie Water, around the point where a midsummer sun rises in the centre of the valley's dip on the horizon...

Machrie Moor

Machrie Moor

Machrie Moor

...against the backdrop of Ard Bheinn and the view to the distant Goatfell in the island's mountainous north.

Machrie Moor

View Larger MapView Bird's Eye


[Tag] Tags: arran, highlands, history, islands of the clyde, machrie moor, rural, scotland, stone circles, uk


Sun, 7 Oct 2012

Hill climb

Weardale

Newlands

Lane to Bellingham

on Bulbarrow

bicyclist

Calbuco

Above Settle

Casablanca

bicyclist

above Weymouth

Leaving Rannoch Moor


[Tag] Tags: chile, cycling, downland, moors, mountains, patagonia, roads, rural, scotland, the north, uk, westcountry


Page: 1 2 3 4

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