Day 16 – 31st March 2016

A glorious early spring morning for walking – but quite difficult in the glaring sunlight to find satisfying photographs. I hiked a circuit from Ashton-under-Hill starting in the chilly frost about 30 minutes before sunrise. I heard my first Chiffchaffs of the year – about 12 in all over the course of about 4 hours. They’re amongst the very first migrants to arrive back from Africa each spring.

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Gorse and Daffodils at Dawn
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Distant Cotswolds
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In Ashton Wood
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Moon – Last Quarter

 

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Day 15 – 25th March 2016

I arrived mid-afternoon to park above Westmancote only to find the usually quiet lane end jammed with cars. I hadn’t known about the Good Friday service held annually on Bredon Hill until one of the many  people streaming down from the hill told me about it. People were leaving as I arrived so I did manage to park. For over 2 hours I felt very overdressed and hot in the lovely warm spring weather, until about 5:45pm on top on the hill when a very chill breeze blew up. The afternoon sun and occasional light clouds held out the prospect of a fine sunset, but alas, it was not memorable. For a minute or two around 6pm a very bright and colourful sundog appeared to the right of the sun, good to see but a photograph it does not make.

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Two Thirds = Two Divided By Three
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Teazels
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Furrows
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Once a Railway Sleeper – Now a Fence Post
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Bredon Hill NNR – Ant Hills
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Field Oak
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Reflected in my Car Roof

Day 14 – 21st March 2016

The Spring Equinox and another afternoon walk, this time with no wind and no sun, just flat grey light. At first I was somewhat uninspired by the prospects, until I decided to forget the vistas and landscapes and concentrate on the more intimate details to be found in the bark and wood of trees, both dead and alive. Bredon Hill has an inexhaustible selection of trees to explore …

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Maze
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Cherry
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Crowded Ivy
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Oak
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Dark Hearted
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Beech
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Deadwood Stage

Day 13 – 14th March 2016

Another afternoon walk, this time with largely blue skies and a chilly breeze. I was surprised to find the first bluebells of the year are just starting to open – a little earlier than usual. The evening sky seemed to be something of a non-event until the colours intensified about 15 minutes after sunset.

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First Bluebells
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Closing In
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Wrapped
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Danger
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Dangling Ivy
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Last Glow

Day 12 – 10th March 2016

Another grey day, this time following a spell of very heavy rain. During my short walk this afternoon, besides finding one or two things to photograph, I was captivated for a full 15 minutes watching a Barn Owl quartering the ground seeking prey. It seemed unperturbed by my presence as I stood stock still in full view in the middle of a path. It occasionally perched for a minute or two, but whilst I was watching it only stooped a couple of times and appeared not to catch anything. Quite remarkably, as I started to walk, I came across a couple who had been dozing in the long grass by the side of the path. The owl had flown directly over them two or three times apparently deciding they were harmless. They awoke as I approached to tell me they’d seen nothing! But the owl then put in a couple more appearances – for good measure.

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Renovation – Work in Progress
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Stone Wall Detail
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Oak Roots and Stream – [First photographed on Day 2 but this time with more flowing water making for a more satisfactory image.]
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Reflected Oak

1.25 Million Tonnes of Rain

On Tuesday evening through to Wednesday morning about 35mm of rain fell over Bredon Hill. Taking the area of Bredon Hill to be about 35 square kilometres, that works out to a total of almost 1,250,000 tonnes of rain; yes, 1.25 million tonnes. One tonne of water has a volume of one cubic metre so that quantity can be visualised as a cube of sides 107m – or even more visually as just over one Wembley Stadium full! Very wet.