There is a lot to see up on the heights, where I left us last time, and I enjoyed every moment of it. Once we got back to the bridge (see the first post in this ‘series within a series‘) it was time for a decision. The others wanted to go down to the beach to finish, whereas I had by that stage reached a limit, and opted to get the Land Rover back up from the landward side of the bridge (there is a pick up point a very short walk from the bridge). We agreed to meet at the pub near the top of the Land Rover’s run. The Wootons as it is called is very unflashy pub, unlike a couple of others in the area, and I was pleased to find a pint that I had not previously sampled. Although this brings the visit to Tintagel to a close, the next post will actually conclude my account of the outing.
Continuing my account of my visit to Cornwall, with the ascent of St Michael’s Mount.
Welcome to the latest post in my series about my stay in Cornwall. This post takes us up St Michael’s Mount and covers some of the stuff at the top. There will be at least two and possibly three more posts about the day.
BASE CAMP (!)
Among the places at ground level, before the ascent begins are the restaurant where we would be having lunch and a visitor’s centre which provides a comprehensive introduction. After these one passes through a field that contains a dairy cottage before the ascent begins.
THE ASCENT BEGINS
The climb up to the buildings on top of the mount begins by way of The Pilgrims Steps, continues past the Giant’s Well and the Giant’s Heart and a cannon emplacement. Then comes the first indoor section and a roof terrace where we pause until the next post in this series…
Through a combination of work commitments and still having large numbers of photos to edit it has been a while since I posted, so just to remind people I was in Greece from May 12th to May 19th, and have so far produced five posts relating to that holiday:
Aperiftif – setting the scene for subseqent posts going into more detail about the holiday and various aspects thereof.
Whereas nothing at Methoni is above 800 years old, and most of it is around half that age (making it a youngster in terms of Greek sites) Nestor’s Palace at Pylos (about 15 kilometres from the modern town of that name) was in its pomp 3,300 years ago or thereabouts, which means that even by Greek standards it counts as old (although Gortyn on the island of Crete is about twice as old as even this). In an effort to preserve these remains a shelter has been built around the site, and part of this structure is a raised walkway from which visitors view the site – no walking round at ground level these days.
NESTOR’S PALACE IN PICTURES
It is now time for the combination of my camera and photo-editing skills to take over and give you a virtual tour of Nestor’s Palace…
SEA VIEWS FROM THE PALACE
Here are my remaining sea views from the palace itself…
Setting the scene for the accounts of Methoni and Nestor’s palace.
On the Tuesday of my Greek holiday (Tuesday 15th May) we visited first the Venetian castle at Methoni and then Nestor’s palace at Pylos. This post sets the scene for the rest of that day by describing things up to the point at which we were poised to visit the castle.
We had intended to get underway by nine o’clock and we did. Although being in the back of a hatchback with small rear windows is somewhat limiting of what one can photograph I got a few shots as we approached our main destination.
THE AQUEDUCT CLOSE UP
I took full advantage of our brief stop…
THE FINAL APPROACH TO METHONI
We passed a scene that featured both good and bad…
The wind turbines on the hill are a positive sign, but the derelict shell of a building at the bottom is unfortunate to say the least. After parking in Methoni we passed the Venetial Well en route to a cafe…
At the cafe we were served water and decided to sample their chocolate crepes, which proved to be ill-advised. These were served in absurd quantities, and the principal covering was nutella. I realised after eating one of the three crepes I was served that I needed to scrape away the nutella before continuing with the others. Half way through the second I gave up, realising that trouble was in store if I continued eating the stuff. This decision came too late to entirely save me from adverse consequences, but at least meant that I only became a little nauseous rather than ever actually feeling or being sick.
Once we were all finished it was time to visit the castle, which will form the subject of my next post.
An account of a visit to the villages of Kingsand and Cawsand.
The feature of yesterday was a walk along the coast from Fort Picklecombe to the villages of Kingsand and Cawsand, and then back. I have many photos from yesterday, and will be sharing the general ones here. I have a fairly sizeable collection of pictures of boats and ships already, and I will be doing a special post about these immediately I have completed this one.
FORT PICKLECOMBE TO THE VILLAGES
In olden times the two villages in this post were on opposite sides of the Devon/ Cornwall boundary – Kingsand in Devon and Cawsand in Cornwall, but nowadays both are comfortably within Cornwall, since the county boundary is the Tamar River. This part of Cornwall, known as the Rame Peninsula has its own official website. The coast path which we followed on our way to the villages is good although a little sticky in places (prolonged heavy rain would undoubtably turn it into a quagmire). Here are some photos from this section of the journey:
KINGSAND AND CAWSAND
We visited the Post Office, where my parents had some stuff to post and something to collect, and then walked down to the sea front by way of a road that was unsuitable for motor vehicles. Here are some pictures from Kingsand and Cawsand…
This establishment ticked one box instantly – investigation of the bar revealed the presence of locally brewed cask ale. They had three of the Dartmoor Brewery’s products available, and as someone who is a dedicated Holmesian as well as a fan of locally brewed ales I opted for “Legend”, with its connection to “The Hound of the Baskervilles”. This proved to be a very good choice – it was an excellent drink. As well as the website, which I linked to in the heading of this section they have a twitter account, @devonport_inn. Here are some pictures taken while enjoying my pint…
THE WALK BACK
We started out along the sea front. My mother abandoned this route quite earlu, but my father and I continued along the sea front rather longer (in retrospect this was an over adventurous decision given some of the terrain we had to contend with). By the time we saw a wooden staircase leading up to a campsite near the fort we were glad of a definite way back to the official route. I conclude this post with some photos from the walk back…
An account of an educational event about the Gaywood River that took place in the Scout Hut on Beulah Street on Sunday.
I have had a very busy few days, which is why there have been no new posts here since Saturday. I will mention my activities since Monday in later posts, but this post is solely concerned with the activity that dominated (in a good way) my Sunday. At the end of this post I will be including a variety of links related in various ways to its content. Here is a map showing the course of the Gaywood River:
FINDING OUT ABOUT THE EVENT
I got an email from my aunt a few days before the event was due to happen explaining her role in it and asking if I wished to meet her there and go back to hers for sausage and chips or if I would prefer a saturday supper. I decided that the event could be quite interesting, so I opted for the former course of action.
Since the event was taking place at the Scout Hut on Beulah Street, which is on the bank of the Gaywood (Beulah Street ends in a bridge that crosses the Gaywood into the car park that serves the Scout Hut) I was going to walking, and since it was a bright, sunny morning I decided on an extended route. Leaving my flat I headed across Baker Lane Car Park to the bridge over the upper Purfleet, heading across King Street to the north bank of the lower Purfleet. Here are some photos from that early part of the walk:
From there I followed the line of the Great Ouse as far as my favourite cormorant observation point…
…before heading round by way of All Saint’s Church to the Library and entering the parkland area, following the Broadwalk until the path through the Vancouver Garden splits off from it, when I followed that and then the path out of the Vancouver Garden that joins the Tennyson Road end of St John’s Walk, at which point I was back on what would be the officially recommended walking route to Gaywood. There were squirrels about (in King’s Lynn only the grey ‘bushy-tailed rat’ variety as opposed to the red ‘Squirrel Nutkin” variety), though it is not always easy to get good photos of them…
From Tennysod Road I followed the footpath the runs between the King Edward VII Academy and the Lynn Academy to Gaywood Road, which I crossed, then crossing the Gaywood on a pedestrian bridge before following its bank all the way to the Scout Hut.
AT THE SCOUT HUT
Immediately outside the Scout Hut the Gaywood Valley Conservation Group had a gazebo and display boards (it was there that I took the photo that appears in the introduction).
Inside the hut was the Civic Society Stall, a cake stall, and various river related learning activities (colouring in pictures of river creatures for the artistically minded, an A-Z quiz of which more later). Although it was not the first thing I looked at, because it was my aunt’s reason for being there I start with…
THE CIVIC SOCIETY STALL
They were looking for people who knew about the history of the Gaywood river, because information boards will be going up at various points along it. They already had some good stuff, but wanted more.
Now we turn out attention to…
THE REST OF THE INDOOR ACTIVITIES
The cake stand looked awesome but discipline prevailed, and I did not sample any of the products. Although it was not really aimed at people my age I did the quiz, and predictably got all the answers in short order. The colouring proved popular, and many of the coloured creatures were then stuck on to a large picture of a river on the wall of the hut.
That is the inside stuff finished, but there was also plenty going on…
IN THE BACK GARDEN
There were two major centres of activity in the back garden, and I make my first port of call there, as I did on the day, at…
THE NORFOLK WILDLIFE TRUST GAZEBO
The Norfolk Wildlife Trust were showing children how to make portable ‘bug hotels’, and they also had a natural history display including a folder full of photographs of animals, and a stash of leaflets, to which I may return in a later post.
We now come to what was for me the best of all the exhibits, courtesy of…
THE NORFOLK RIVERS TRUST
There were two parts to this exhibit. The minor part was display showing graphically how different treatment of land in the winter affects the soil:
The second part of this display was a living exhibit from the river – two large buckets of river water with creatures that naturally live in it there to be seen (the amount of dissolved sediment in the water, the small size of these creatures and the fact that some of them live on the bottom of the river means that this the only way to make them visible). There was also a small sample dish which the person running the exhibit used to show as very small curiosities…
There was also a story teller outside…
To start this section we look at organisations who were actually involved in some way or other with this event:
I conclude this section by mentioning a couple of bloggers who regularly feature nature in their work:
CindyKnoke – keen photographer and nature lover. Below is the feature image from (and link to) her most recent post:
Anna – her posts about fighting to save nature in her part of the world are always inspiring, and her two recent series of posts “Paradise on Earth” and “Butterflies in Trosa” are both stunning. Below is the feature image from (and link to) her most recent butterfly post.
This was an excellent event and I learned a good deal about the history and nature of the Gaywood River. I have one kvetch which is that the event was poorly publicised – I only found out about it through my aunt and then only a few days before it was happening, meaning that anyone else I might have alerted would almost certainly have had other plans. If half of you have enjoyed this post even half as much as I enjoyed the event I have done a good job. I finish by urging you to take the time to follow up those links.