From Symi to my back garden

I’ve been experimenting with the technology to record some of the treks I’ve been doing on Symi, using a combination of apps to record routes and then create a 3D ‘fly-over’ incorporating photos taken along the way.  It’s not entirely satisfactory yet as the grid is a bit too coarse to always allocate the photos to the point at which they were taken.  But it’s a work in progress.  Below are a few examples, just click on the links.

To the mountain-top monastery of Stavros Polemou

To the mountain-top monastery of Kokkimedes

A ridge-top loop around Nimborios

Let me know what you think of the results


I’ve been back home for a couple of weeks to check that family and friends are behaving themselves  ….. and to try to rescue the vegetable garden, ravaged by drought (!!!! in the UK ????), caterpillars, aphids and a rabbit.  The gardening produced a few colourful and interesting photo opportunities.  Goes to show that if you keep your eyes open there is interest even in your back garden.

The long summer heatwave and drought in the UK came to an end with a weekend of heavy rain and falling temperatures.  As so often happens, as the rain clouds disappeared south-eastwards, looking across the valley from the balcony I was treated to a colourful rainbow display, a double bow.  This is always especially poignant for me, my late wife’s name, Enfys, being Welsh for rainbow.


The extent of the bow


The fainter double outside it


Zooming in on one end shows the brilliance of the colours

Cutting out this year’s raspberry canes, for the first time ever unproductive because of the drought, and tying in the new growth, I disturbed a dramatic 75mm-long caterpillar of an Eyed Hawk-moth which had been munching through the leaves.  I had been squishing caterpillars of cabbage white butterflies which had reduced my brassicas to lace but this was a rare beauty so I carefully relocated it – after taking the obligatory photos.


The only coin I had to hand to show the size was a euro.  Note the blue tail-spur which differentiates it from other hawk-moths


Zooming in on the head showing the yellow shield-shaped marking

Having tied in the raspberry canes I started to clear the dead leaves from a clump of yucca, a painful job because even when dead they are needle-sharp and unyielding.  Deep inside I uncovered an abandoned goldfinch nest. My guess is that the parents had been intimidated by next-door’s new cat, the nest being a bit too close to ground level.  On a positive note, the cat also seems to have chased off the rabbit.


Dense dead leaves covering the trunk and the nest



… which emerged in a small fork when they had been cleared



Close up of the nest, still with three eggs in it.


This entry was posted in Greece, Grey Britain, Hiking, Landscape, Mountains, Nature, Photography, Pontypool, Uncategorized, Wales, Weather, Wildlife and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to From Symi to my back garden

  1. Chris says:

    Love the 3D flyovers of your walks – what a cool idea. I must investigate the software.

  2. Sallyann Phillips says:

    I really enjoyed the video app I’d never be fit enough to do that journey myself . So Thankyou. Loved the rainbow very esoteric

  3. Phillippa Lee says:

    Really like the videos – I would like to be able to slow them down.. But interesting as an overview of where you have been. x

  4. Christopher Pegington says:

    I think your animated maps are super! It’s a shame you can’t do them for walks around Pontypool etc .they would be a great help and aid to walkers. Chris

    Sent from my iPad


    • BarryH says:

      They can be done for any area. The problem is that there are issues of privacy to be taken into account. That’s why the ones I’ve posted are from earlier in the summer.

  5. Pat Mears says:

    That’s all very well but how is the rhubarb ?!

    Get Outlook for iOS ________________________________

  6. Dee Jones says:

    Hello Barry I gather from a recent blog that you are back in the garden gaving had a long stay in Symi once again. Like you and for the same reasons my raspberry canes were almost entirely unproductive; as was my plum tree for reasons unknown. How is your knowledge of plum trees? Walking has been restricted to Spain and Devon this year but thankfully has become less painful. For a variety of reasons I missed out on skiing last season….did you ski in Lake Louise again? Do drop a note if you are ever in Car diff and fancy a coffee. Cheers Dee

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