Thursday, 19 January 2017
What a day for a walk with our monthly group: dry, clear but cold. And what a route: up onto the Twelve Men's Moor area of Bodmin Moor, heading for the long abandoned mediaeval village at Trewortha and passing through Bronze Age settlements and 18/19/20th century industrial archaeology. Quite a tough out and back 8 miler. What a shame that I'd forgotten to put a memory card in my camera and all the views and interesting sights went unrecorded. Still, they are lodged in my memory and are not lost entirely.
Monday, 16 January 2017
All good things come to an end and so did our sojourn on the Roseland Peninsular. We took a chance with the weather and finished off with two shorter walks to join up the dots between previously completed stretches. Walk 1 (after a Magical Mystery Tour on a Number 50 bus) was a 4 mile linear one from Veryan back to Portscatho. Walk two was a circular 4 miler from Portloe to Portholland and back to Portloe via the Coastal Footpath. Hey, no rain on either of them.
|Looking east across the sands of Pendower Beach towards Nare Head, which we've already walked a while back.|
|Looking west at the end of our walk towards Portscatho across Porthcurnick Beach.|
|The Hidden Hut at Porthcurnick. I've read that it has a cult following for its food and foodie events in the summer months. It's not that hidden but it's a bit of a walk to get there.|
|And on to Walk 2. The next three shots, taken within a minute of each other, illustrate what makes walking the Coastal Footpath so interesting and varied. Shot 1: looking out to sea at Perbagus Point above Portholland Cove.|
|Shot 2: a few degrees to the right of Shot 1.|
|Shot 3: a few more degrees to the right of Shot 2.|
|Flowers by the wayside: an early Common Violet.|
|Looking west up the coast with Gull Rock clearly visible off Nare Head.|
|A Robin lurking in the bracken.|
|I liked the undulating handrail on the side of the footpath as it dropped into the village.|
|She seems to be saying "I'll keep an eye out for you for when you are next passing". We might just do that.|
Friday, 13 January 2017
Another day, another walk. But this time with five friends who had come to visit for the day. Our route, just 4 miles, took us across the peninsular from Portscatho to Roseland church and from there we traced a circular track around Messack Point. Windy in parts but dry. Lots of vistas and good company, with a very nice meal at the Plume and Feathers at Portscatho at the end of it.
|This map shows the position of St Just and the size of the parish of the same name. Although much, much smaller than St Mawes, St Just is the parish church and that's where all the burials (and baptisms and marriages) from St Mawes have taken place over the centuries.|
|The view across the creek from the church. It is a popular mooring spot for yachts as it has direct access to sailing in the Carrick Roads. All of the yachts have been taken out of the water for the winter months.|
|Inside the light and airy church. It has a very nice atmosphere.|
|The church was full of many colourful kneelers, most of which had an animal or plant theme. These few were about remembrance.Taken with some friends in the USA in mind.|
|Set in a sub-tropical garden planted up by a Victorian plantsman called Tresseder, the graveyard rambles over a very wide and hilly area and is an intriguing jumble of styles and ages. So much to look at, so little time to do so.|
|Not too sure what I did wrong with this shot of a Curlew as it seems to be in focus.|
|There were quite a few Redshanks poking around in the mud. Shanks = old name for legs and, guess what, they've got red legs.|
|A single Camelia with, I think, an early White-tailed Bumble Bee out on a forage.|
Wednesday, 11 January 2017
We've been trying to complete the 312 miles of the Cornwall Coastal Footpath for an embarrassingly long time. Our excuse is that we find it difficult to allocate enough time to walk significant chunks of it, hence one of the reasons for 'getting away' and concentrating on completing discrete sections. Quite often we find ourselves in the position of having to 'fill in' short stretches: today was one such when a short walk enabled us to join two pieces together. Just 3 miles in unexpectedly dry conditions above, but with plenty of mud below. It was basically a circumnavigation of St Anthony's Head.
|For those wondering where the Roseland Peninsular is, here's a map. Just think due south of Truro and to the right of Falmouth.|
|Not as clear as for our last coastal jaunt. Looking eastwards across Porthbeor Beach with Nare Head in the distance.|
|We passed by St Anthony's church again and I took the opportunity to take this photograph looking up into the central spire. The outside is octagonal and you can pick out the eight segments of this around the central section.|
|Fairly common seabird just out of focus Part 34: Curlew. Downward curved beak so curlew or whimbrel. No whimbrels this far south so it must be a curlew.|
|Not-so-common seabird just out of focus Part 23: Purple Sandpiper. We've seen lots of them on the Scottish islands but they are not common in Cornwall.|
|The lighthouse at St Anthony's Head giving sailors a marker into the Carrick Roads.|
|A very pleasant and light interior with two aisles.|
|Near the porch was an unusual round-headed Celtic cross. Lost for many years apparently and then recovered from the walls of a farm building.|
Tuesday, 10 January 2017
Two interviews, two women, two different styles.
Theresa Maybe or Maybenot gave an interview last Sunday, during which she showed off the incredible political skill that has characterised her premiership – speaking at length while saying absolutely nothing at all and never, ever, giving a direct answer to a direct question. And you know that when she says she wants to be clear, she’s going to be as clear as mud. I think if she was asked what is the capital of the UK, she’d say something like: “I want to be very clear on this. We’re working towards the very best capital for all the people of the UK. It’s not a binary choice. The capital is the capital. The seat of government is the seat of government. The people of Britain deserve a bespoke capital that’s the seat of government of a country that believes in free trade and supports our friends and allies but which makes it own laws and controls its own borders, and that’s what I’m going to deliver.” Still, you can’t complain that May is inconsistent. She allows herself to be pinned down on nothing, and she delivers exactly that - nothing, simultaneously saying a lot while saying nothing substantial in an effort to distract us from the vacuity of her policy making. Or are we all wrong in thinking this? See later.......
On the same day, in another political interview, there was some straight talking and some definite commitments. And that could only mean that neither Theresa May nor the Labour party were involved. Nicola Sturgeon is a very different kind of politician. She’s got a plan and assured Andrew Marr that she was not bluffing. If the Tories take Scotland into a hard Brexit, there will be another independence referendum. She’s offering compromises, she’s offering negotiation, and if Theresa May’s government do not meet Scotland halfway then there will be another independence vote. Because if May won’t take Scotland’s position into account then all she’s doing is proving that the Union is as fictitious as her reputation for clarity.
There is, of course, another interpretation of May's apparent constant spouting of content-free waffle instead of anything that approaches a route map for getting from A to B or, for that matter, any explanation of what B actually consists of. Maybe, just maybe, there is a grand game of double bluff going on and anyone who believes May is sitting on her bum with no plan is delusionary. Maybe she's got her army of civil servants beavering away on the details of Brexit. And when she triggers Article 50, she'll lay her cards on the table and shout “Gotcha. Full House”, leaving us all thinking “What happened there?” It would be wise for the opposition to be prepared for a sprung trap and maybe get their terms and conditions for Brexit out first. But will they? Nicola is doing it but the rest of them? All is silence.
Monday, 9 January 2017
A few people have wondered why, as we live in Cornwall, we don't just travel to our walks each day. Today was one of the days that illustrate why. A leisurely breakfast, a five minute drive to the starting point, a walk, a short drive back to base and a relaxed evening. Why spend three hours travelling when it can be on our doorstep? And now the details of today's 8 miler.
|Seascape #1: just looking out to sea.|
|Seascape #2: looking west towards St Anthony's Head.|
|It's a Diver but which one? Great Northern, Red Throated or White Throated? Disappointingly, they were too far off to identify, a task made even more difficult by the fact that the winter plumage of all three is very similar.|
|Wayside Curiosity #2:Just by Towan Beach. A wooden pole about 15 foot high with regular hand/foot holds. A totem pole, perhaps? Installation art (not as far fetched as it may seem)?|
|No, of course, it's a wreck post but not any old wreck post. It's The Wreck Post. You can read what it is yourself. but, to me, it raises as many questions as it answers. How exactly was this done? From land? From a pretend wreck?|
|Behold a flock of Turnstones who were turning stones. Well, pebbles actually. But Turnpebble doesn't trip off the tongue so easily.|
|Seascape #3: with fishing boat.|
|Let sleeping seals lie - on an isolated cove between Towan and Porthbeor Beaches.|
|The local style of stone walling - herringbone because of the raw material to hand. It's rather attractive but must take an age to build.|
|Our first daffodils of the year. They are definitely running later than last year 'back home'.|