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!

Glorious fresh green growth

20th April 2011

After a little break, I am back cycling to and from work again. In the mornings, it is possible to revel in the way that everything has come to life over the last few weeks. That we have what feels like summer weather only can have helped. This year, it seems that the display of cherry tree blossom is better than ever. Whether this is because I wasn't looking in previous years or this is a bumper year is hard for me to say. Regardless of that little triviality, there certainly are plenty of trees in bloom for many of us to enjoy. Regardless of whether flowering trees are putting their display for a while, it is the freshness of the green foliage at this time of year that always delights me, especially in golden morning light.

These are sights that soothe the soul and induce a certain reverie. They also draw thoughts of walking and cycling trips into the mind and the fact that there are a series of long weekends coming our way offers opportunities for doing just that. So far, no firm decisions have been made though Cowal and the Isle of Man have come to mind when I left my mind wander earlier today. Not being a royal watcher of any sort of fervency should help me to get away when many eyes are focussed on televisions. Trains and buses may even be quieter away from London but the day itself will tell its own story.

While it sounds simple to say that it's just a matter of making plans and then making them happen, it's been something of a weakness for me in recent months due to one very big distraction in my life. For instance, I had designs on heading to Caernarfon and Beaumaris in Wales last weekend but it never came to pass. In the event, I contented myself with an hour or two on my bike wandering around Sutton and Langley. Sights of surrounding hills were taken in and the low level of Bottoms Reservoir noted, a consequence of a largely dry March and April this year. With good things on your local patch, it's easy to feel consoled.

Saying that, going away somewhere is good too. Last year's Easter Sunday walk from Baslow to Bamford had me wishing that I'd booked somewhere to stay so I didn't need to leave for home that evening. With the prospect of savouring the countryside between Buxton and Ashbourne that is something that applies to such a venture too. While on the subject of past Easter escapes, there was a stay in Leeds that allowed me to fan out into the Yorkshire Dales. While I am sure that you wouldn't have chosen that base for those purposes, it did what I asked of it. Both of these trains of thought are revealing possibilities for getaways that aren't so far away from home and they have their place too. Then, there still is that aborted trip to Caernarfon and Beaumaris too. Ideas are queueing up for anything, not a bad state of affairs at all. Time needs to made for planning so that something can happen.

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