Sonntag, 24. November 2013

Combe with a View

Wayfarer's Walk, Berkshire
Just a ten minute's drive from Hungerford, on Walbury Hill near Combe, is the highest natural point in the South East of England. Today was cold and drizzly. I had planned to walk a bit on the Wayfarer's Walk on the ridge but the wind was so harsh that I had to find another route, tightly wrapped up in wooly hat, scarf and gloves. As the car was parked up on the ridge I had to make my way back up ... but at least I was quite warm after climbing up the hill:

Selfie with crumpled collar
50th anniversary style
I have never seen so many pheasants in my life, they seem to be everywhere this time of year. Only one of them didn't rush off in a panic ...

posing pheasant

gloriously golden larch in Combe, Berkshire
November view
almost up on the ridge

Sonntag, 10. November 2013

Border Traffic

I drove the 3 miles from Hungerford to Shalbourne today, from West Berkshire to Wiltshire. I always try to walk new circular routes and it was a bright and cold day, just perfect (apart from the seriously muddy footpaths). The light seems to be of a particular brittleness this time of year, the sky has a special transparency to it. On some of the photos I took today one can actually get a sense of it.

near Shalbourne, Wiltshire.
Cichorium intybus
There are still flowers to be found. I was amazed to find lots of chicory blossoms on my way from Shalbourne to Ham, a flower I normally associate with the height of summer. The German name for Cichorium intybus is "Wegwarte" ("guardian of the path") and it is my favourite wild flower. Now that the leaves are falling, my eyes are drawn even more to the trees. Large cedars of Lebanon fascinate me, the vivid colours of larches ...