At the end of a busy year it seems appropriate to look back and remember the places I went and the things I did during 2012. Far too much to cram into a blogable number of words so I decided to do it with images pulled from the thousands of photos I took. Far too many to cram into just one set of images so I have divided it into two parts. Today images from my ramblings around Wales. Tomorrow images from my ramblings around Greece. Just a bakers’ dozen of images from each, not necessarily the best photographically but ones which hopefully summarise the year.
A long time ago now but at the beginning of February the temperature dropped and snow fell above 1000 feet, perfect for going out to play on the ridge.
The high point on the ridge is known locally as ‘The White Stone’ because the trig point used to be painted white but when ground survey was abandoned in favour of using satellite data for mapping purposes lack of maintenance meant that it became grey and shabby. So I painted it.
Through the year there were many spectacular sunrises, the sun lighting up clouds, or in this case vapour trails, before appearing above the ridge on the opposite side of the valley.
And at the end of the day a brisk 30 minute walk up to the Folly Tower was sometimes rewarded with spectacular sunsets.
But summer in the Grey Britain 2012 will be remembered as very wet and very grey with a dire consequence for much-trodden footpaths.
True I photographed the greyness of the experience but I also tried to look for colour and usually, though not always, managed to find some.
The rain also meant that the waterfalls in the Brecon Beacons National Park were at their most dramatic as I re-acquainted myself with the area after many years absence.
When I got back from Greece in October I went on a week-long course at the National Writers’ Centre in North Wales, learned a lot, and ambled along the coast near Cricieth with the camera.
Emboldened by the course I submitted a proposal for a compendium book describing bus routes in Britain and was commissioned to write one of the chapters. So taking advantage of one of the rare sunny days I set out to photograph some of the key points of interest on the route including Big Pit Mining Museum.
I also took the camera for a walk on the few blue sky days to try to capture some of the autumn colour including the American Gardens above Pontypool Park.
On grey, claggy days I sometimes went down to Cardiff to meet up with friends but even then autumn colours added a brightness to the gloom in Bute Park around the castle.
With the sun low in the sky as winter drew on much of the garden was in shade but towards sunset it lit up features including this construction of limestone pebbles and fossils.
Then in early December winter cold returned, briefly, leaving spectacular whispers of hoar frost on trees high on the ridge. Before it warmed up again to give us a Grey Christmas.