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!


20th June 2010

There may have been wonderful sunny summer weather visiting us over the last few weeks, but goings-on in my professional life have meant that I haven’t made the kind of use of it that is habitual for me. That’s not to say that there haven’t been restive escapes during the hurly-burly. In fact, lengthening my cycling commute on the homeward leg has afforded the spending of some quality time among still fresh greenery.

Not inappropriately given the prospect of a major change to my work circumstances (a change of job is looming on the horizon), some of those peaceful interludes have had me poking around the National Trust property surrounding the escarpment that is Alderley Edge. The result was that some aimless exploration took me in directions that I mightn’t have followed while if I had a map with me! Even so, no harm came from them and you need to break out from the constraints of modern life from time to time anyway. The area is a confined one that I know well enough so not too much can go awry. Still, there are plenty of paths for a stroll and it’s under tree cover much of the time too, a perfect antidote to the hot bright strong sunshine that occasionally makes its appearance around this time of year. Trees may be things with which I have a love/hate relationship but they have their plus points too and the National Trust’s broadleaved collection near the edge offers plenty of shade when it gets as warm as it has been on the way towards midsummer.

Alderley Edge, Cheshire, England

Looking further ahead, it doesn’t look as if this summer will get the customary longer break that has tended to happen every year in recent times. Nevertheless, there are some days’ leave coming to me that I plan to use as well as I can. It’s a matter of using what is available rather than having all that I’d like to possess. Ambitions may require control (the sort of Hebridean adventure that I enjoyed a few years ago is out of the question for now but you never know what the future might bring) but one or two possibilities are coming to mind regardless. Despite the constraints that I face, I should get more out of the summer than I did during the one when my career was first set on its faltering course a decade ago. Its next phase is ahead of me and I hope to keep up my wanderings through hill country. They have afforded respite from life’s toils up to now and it is unlikely that the need will disappear.

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