Outdoor Discoveries

What originally was a news section for the rest of the website soon became a place for me to write about human-powered wanderings in the countryside. Photography inspires me to get out there, mostly on foot these days, though cycling got me started. Musings on the wider context of outdoor activity complete the picture, so I hope that there is something of interest in all that you find here. Thank you for coming!

A feast of fog and frost

1st December 2008

One of the problems with a flatter area like the Cheshire plain is that fog can accumulate and, even though Macclesfield is set higher on the cusp of hill country and it’s not near any major rivers or other bodies of water, we were graced with very thick fog for the whole of Saturday. The thickness was sufficient to make one wonder about the sense in navigating through the countryside without the full picture, even if walking in foggy conditions does possess its own charm.

That fog cleared progressively on Sunday and all that remains is a faint haze today. However, frosted vegetation is everywhere for all to see, acting as a reminder to wrap up warm and my North Face Nuptse is brilliant for this so long as conditions remain dry. Seeing everywhere as if it was immersed in a freezer cabinet has its own delights so long as you keep your wits about you and do not take a tumble from slipping on ice; it’s the black variant that really catches you out and it’s amazing how clumsy people can be with throwing water about the place.

In fact, all that’s needed to complete the picture is snow and that seems to be arriving too, even if my cynical self believes that we should never expect that much of the white stuff and that’s even with my venturing out on snow-covered lands from time to time; those parts with greater altitude and higher latitude seem better endowed. Photographically speaking, it all looks a bit monochrome under grey skies but something can be made of that also. And, with sufficient preparation, it all can make for wondrous winter wandering.

Snow and frost is something that we don’t get to notice for so long these days, especially with the usual pre-Christmas hurly-burly, so it’s probably no bad bad idea to make what we can of it if and when we can (I am trying to shake off a cold at the moment). Every season has its own delights and I am beginning to wonder if summer is overrated and so reckon that it’s best to get out there to savour whatever is on offer whenever it comes. I’ll see if I can fit in an outing among all the other things that need doing.

Update 2008-12-05: We have had our snow and it’s gone for now though it always can return.

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