Monday, 10 December 2018

Trips to Anglesey not one but 2!!!

A few days ago I turned 34 and I feel more happy and confident about what I love and I still enjoy the Nature of wildlife photography but Wild camping has really got into my heart so in 2019 Anglesey will be my area of exploring plus I still have not been able to photograph a Red squirrel.
Heres one I saw but its not the best quality
 To feel the warm wet grass under my feet in the middle of November was glorious
 After visiting porth wen and Bull bay we decided to check out Point Lynas and as we had a cottage to check into later that day our best bet was to head back to the get our gear dry and ourselves showered then head there the next day.
Point lynas was a few miles walk from Almwch and having a new walking app (Footpath) on my Ipad which is one of the best I've used and seems to use less data and power to run.
The reason I was excited about visiting the view point was for the sightings of Rissos Dolphins and a species I have not seen. On the day we visited it was sunny and calm unfortionately there were none showing but we saw plenty of Gannets and Porpoises in good numbers.
 Gannet or Porpoise?
2 Porpoises but there were more around
 A lone Gannet heads inland
 The area past Point Lynas yet to be explored by myself
The light drops as we head back home
Each time I go wild camping I try to get my kit weight down and make sure I can be as comfy as possible. I have just treated myself to a few pieces of kit and at the minute I am finding the Sea to summit camping range fantastic as the gear is so light and portable. I have given up on using a tent and my new setup is a large umbrella pegged down then I climb into 2 waterproof sleeping bag covers with a fleece blanket then over the top a emergency shelter cover. I've just tested the kit on a lone trip to the coast and I must say I slept so well and as it worked in winter so in summer it should be the perfect lightweight and quick setup. The reason I love wild camping is it allows you to be out in the wild near the place where you want to be without much effort as long as you set up at last light and leave the area tidy and packup at first light then nobody will ever know your there. Enough of wild coastal camping for this year or maybe not as I have a few days at Christmas which may be wild time.
Example of my wild setup
I've started planning for next years wild camping trips as my boss has just confirmed my holidays.

Merry Christmas and stay wild

Mike

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

A trip to Anglesey Porth Wen 1/2

Last week we enjoyed a week on the coast of Anglesey and the weather was amazing with sun, hail, cloud, and Thunderstorms and to me, it was wonderful being out with just the things in my backpack.
 
Redline we walked
One place we decided to visit and camp near was an old Victorian brickworks which are right at the top of Anglesey down a well-worn path that had a flow of water all the way down.
 
Drying out our stuff from camping the previous night
Porth Wen building looked stunning in the Autumnal light
The largest building in the area as the sun went down
There was no one else camping there but I did not feel relaxed enough being at the end of a waterfall created the path and if we needed to leave the area in the night it would be tough. An hour before sunset we headed back up to look at some ruins to use as a camping spot and as we reached the top it started to rain. We chose a high sheltered point near some turbines but it had an amazing view of Porth wen bay and the surrounding hills and sea. We set up the tent at last light just as the weather turned the sky went black and we found ourselves up high in a thunderstorm. It was exhilarating laying in the comfort of my down sleeping bag holding the outer part of the tent from the 30mph winds. We survived the night and packed up 2 hours before light to clear up the area and await a gap in the rain and the sunrise as the paths were tricky in the dark. On the 3-4 miles walk back to Almwch we were joined by Porpoises feeding on the tideline as the rain got harder and the sky turned red we were soaked through but full of energy and happy to be surrounded by natural beauty.
Next time I will include some more wildlife photographs as I did not take to many due to having my camera packed in two sections to balance our backpacks weight.

Stay wild

Mike

Sunday, 21 October 2018

Wild Paddle boarding and more wild time

With the nights coming in quickly now its time to photograph those creatures who come out at last light and I have found Badgers, foxes and barn owls all in one area. One night I captured a wonderful slow motion clip on my iphone

On many evenings lately I have seen Barn Owls on many rough grassy areas which is great to see and shows that the dry summer really made a difference in there hunting success but where some species suceed others fail and struggle to cope.
 While out enjoying the low light walks I check upon many Badgers and some evenings Id arrive and they would be emerging to have a scratch and air there bedding. On countless occaisions I keep hearing about the warmer summer weather usaully means a cold winter to follow which I am really happy about as I have so much outdoorgear ready to go for outdoor walking and wild camping.
 
I have been enjoying paddle boarding up the river weaver lately and with the ice on its way I am trying to get my board out as much as possible as I dont want to use in the cold so I will switch to my kayak on the colder but sunnier afternoons.
Thanks to my boss for letting me have a week off unpaid but as I have clocked up overtime lately it wont break the bank but I can have a winter break on ANGLESEY which has boosted my energy X1000. I have started prepping just incase the cold weather comes in.
Stay warm and stay wild as the snow of winter is coming...

Mike

Sunday, 16 September 2018

I'm back with alot to say and my wild camping in Wales

After a month and a bit of rest and enjoying the things I love now I am back to blogging as the nights are drawing in and the leaves are starting to fall. Last week I finished off my summer with a week of wild camping on Anglesey as on my short visit in June plus recent sighting of Orca, Snowy Owls and Risso's Dolphins have propelled me onto the stunning Island.
We ended up staying along the Menai Straits in a wild area for 4 nights we left the area tidy and you would not have known we had been there. One night we slept in our outdoor wet gear on top of a thick waterproof cover with our backpacks as pillows it was rather comfy and I wanted to do again but we had a few stormy nights so I had to get the tent out in the middle of the night to stop us getting wet. In these moments I truly feel myself and free. I'd probably feel happy as a well-off wild sleeper as I'm in my element and truly feel able to cope with changes in weather and the constant adapting.
Sunday morning arrival and just after we crossed the bridge the rain stopped
 After a night of 12 hours of rain and strong winds out came the sun and I was able to dry things out in the sun and get off any mud that was on our gear in the freshwater rock pools
Rock Pools at Almwich
First light on our walk to get breakfast loaded with our backpacks
My favorite sightings were seeing my first Avocet flying up the Menai straight after following the coastal path off through miles of fields. I also saw my first Welsh Red Squirrels along a woodland boardwalk on the way to catch the bus one of six back home after stopping for some fresh pies and cream cakes from my favorite bakery.

 I enjoyed it so much and still lots to explore and that's before I get a paddle board on the water. Holiday properties to rent are already on my to-do list.

More photographs next time as I have not had the chance to unpack my DSLR yet 

Regards

Mike

Sunday, 29 July 2018

A visit to Chester Zoo

A few weeks ago I ended up going to Chester Zoo for my brothers birthday and it was a rather nice day and as I have not been since I was in Junior school over numerous years ago so I thought it was about time for a visit. I have often thought about going but then I changed my mind thinking it would be overcrowded after the zoo has been gaining more attention from its worldwide shown TV programme on channel four and National Geographic. I need not have worried it was busy at Opening at 10am but got quieter at midday which was just perfect as we left to catch the bus home about 2pm. I was quite surprised to see people using 600mm lenses in the free-roaming bird areas not sure if I think that's right but who am I to judge. All we took was a 300mm Nikon D7000 which was just to document the day and photograph some of our favourites.
Comodo Dragon
We saw most of the animals if not for a quick view but hopefully, we will be returning soon as my brother bought an Annual pass which seems good value but as I am not a big fan of crowds I won't be going as often. I'll probably be spending my time in the wildlife garden area as it's free which is a big tick from me.
Here are a few of my favourite photographs that I or my brother took





Stay wild

Mike