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!


17th July 2010

July’s often a month that sends me into a sort of hiatus. Maybe, for all the hopes of scorching summers that seem to circulate every year, it’s because the weather isn’t ever as good as what gets anticipated. This year, it’s being a damp one after the very dry weather of May and June. Having rain now cannot be such a bad thing when reservoirs are low and the earth scorched and bone dry. That situation makes it hard to knock the dampness though it might make walking outings wetter.

Within the last few weeks, I was sent off on a business trip to Sweden where I got to feel the full force of a scorching sun on evening strolls around Södertälje and Stockholm. It made me glad of our maritime climate and reminded me of the realities of outdoor walking in hot sunny weather even if I was never in the middle of civilisation in comparison with some of my day walks through the British countryside. It often seems as if the trade-off for summer walking is between uncomfortably high temperatures for walking or cloud cover that cuts down on photographic opportunities. Last month’s escape to Arran and Kintyre saw times when both extremes were encountered. It’s not so often that we get a happy medium like what I met on Harris a few years ago.

With a change of job next week, I am not sure what opportunities I’ll be having for getting out in the countryside but it looks like being the occasional day trip for a while. As I opined on here before, the idea of a week-long trip to somewhere in Scotland has to be placed on hold for this year though I still will see what may come my way as the year continues on its downward trajectory. Time may look limited but I’ve made do with that before. Autumn,  a season that at least some Swedes await after a hot summer, is on its way to us too and may offer good things as it did last year when an Indian summer was in order after the non-summer that we got. The future’s not ours to see but hope springs eternal too.

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