Sunday, 19 April 2020

Death and new life

It has been a tough few months of happiness, sadness, and stress but one thing that remains constant is the Nature that's in my garden and my hidden local spots where I won't see a soul. Just before the Lockdown with the virus I and my family found out that my father had terminal cancer and only had a few months to live. I knew one day this time would come and 4 weeks ago he started to show quickly go downhill and the last 2 weeks of caring for him were so precious for me, my brother, and my mother. I told him so many times in those 2 weeks how much I loved him and that he was the greatest dad/man I have known. I would not have been able to get through this without nature and my daily dose of the renewal of life as my father was losing his. Once he got so weak we felt like there was no more we could do and his pain was getting to hard manage so we luckily got him into st Lukes which was a beautiful place. The last moments before going are of holding his hand saying goodbye and I loved him so much. I remember seeing him smiling as he went off with my younger brother in the back of a patient transfer bus staring at us and the house he raised his family and spent 40 years working and being happily married brings a tear to my eye and a smile to face.

My brother told me a lovely thing that before my brother left him at St Luke's he grabbed his hand and said "Thank you for everything" which made me cry and smile at the same time even now it gets me and will for many years to come. A few days later after being visited by my mum and sister each day then on Easter Monday as the sunset on a beautiful warm summer day, we got the call we were waiting for that my father had passed away. When I found out he was dying of cancer  I wanted him to go on a sunny blue sky day it was one of the saddest days of my life but I was happy as I knew he was free from pain and since that day when I am out in the woods or walking country path, I think of him and see him in the beauty of nature around me. I'll try to post more soon but it will take time for me to get back to the energy I once had...
Thank you

Mike

Sunday, 5 January 2020

END OF 2019 AND BEGINNING OF WILD2020

I'm a bit late with my usual end of year blog but with the disconnection between myself and social media of late. This is the third attempt at writing this blog post as I have started planning my 2020 wild camping and places to visit plans but then again being on foot without a car can throw abit of chaos in as the weather quickly changes in the Uk.
 This year I will be crossing the bridges when I come to them and I'm sure there will be many to cross
Regards

Mike

Thursday, 28 November 2019

Cottage with a wood burner and Marine watch

At the beginning of November, I had a last-minute trip for 2019 to spend some time back on Anglesey as this year I have really fallen in love with the island and next year I hope to explore more of Wales as well as revisit Anglesey as the wild camping this year gave some beautiful moments in Nature. Rather than wild camp, we decided to book 2 Airbnbs one at Amlwch for 3 nights and one at Newborough for 2 nights. At our Almwch cottage which was located right next to the coastal path and one of my possible living locations with some amazing views and close to some really good marine mammal spotting locations at high tide the creatures are pushed a few meters from viewing areas thanks to the deep water. We were up before the sun rose to get as much light watching the sea especially as the wind was fresh and the days are shorter.
 The paths were quite muddy but as always with these trips, I prepare for everything and thanks to our new walking boots our feet were well protected. While laying against a rock and watching the sea the seals caught fish and kept us entertained for many hours.
Seals and Porpoises were great things to see but the one time a mother and calve popped up my lens blurred and I just missed my best shot of a Porpoise.
On our second part of the holiday, we decided to get the bus from Amlwch to Menai bridge for a cup of tea I made before leaving the cottage for the last time and some chocolate digestives we sat by the straits near the Britannia bridge and watched the sunrise higher in the sky let the 9am rush pass by before getting our next bus to Llangefni where we bought some.  breakfast and supplies for the day.
We ended up walking from Llangefni to Maltraeth to Newborough via one of the Red Squirrel forest areas, one thing I had not noticed before was a rope over the road from the larger Newborough forest to the smaller area of forest opposite allowing squirrels and maybe pine martens a safe route across avoiding the road.
View of the hills/mountains of North Wales
On our only full day at Newborough we headed through the forest along the sun-soaked yet empty beach to the Island and I ended up getting impatient waiting for the tide to go out I walked through the shallow water soaking my shoes through but it proved to be worth it. We walked to the further point with the highest unused lighthouse and less than a half a mile away we spotted a large pod of Dolphins I was hoping Rissos but they ended up being Bottlenoses and the closest I have seen through my camera for a while. One had a very unique cut in its fin but seemed very straight and long unlike the other members of the pod but as you can see below they were very active.

A great week and the last week away till April 2020 as I have got lots of things to do over the winter.
A lovely Autumn kayak was a lovely first trip out once I returned home this year I hope to kayak in the snow which would be amazing on this river.
Enjoy the beginning of Winter and hopefully plenty of frost and snow to come....

Regards

Mike

Sunday, 27 October 2019

Autumn is here and Winter is around the courner...

I'm  very late with this months post but I must say that I have cut down my main job and my self-employment working hours in favor of being outdoors especially in the hills of the peak district the fresh air and the stunning views are beautiful and I can't wait to get up there if we get any snow this winter as I have found some really stunning peaceful areas away from most parking places.
My favorite view from Shining Tor as well as the Pine woodlands below
 I've just booked 5 nights on Anglesey for the next month and as I have just been given a pair of binoculars by a customer so I can't wait to use them for spotting marine mammals as I want to see Rissos Dolphins as I have booked a cottage near a regular sighting location so if my lucks in I may get to see and is very close to Amlwch port which is on my list of future home locations.
This photo of Anglesey Walking Holidays is courtesy of TripAdvisor
A week ago we spotted 3 young Hedgehogs and there mother wandering around in the daylight in and around my garden. I knew they needed to get somewhere together and warm so we placed them in my shed area as I recently emptied to take down but thought it would make a winter shelter for the mother to hibernate and the young to fatten up and be safe from the winter frosts.
This was over a week ago and I am happy to say the young are all doing fine in there very warm hay and leaf-filled area. Their mother has gone to sleep and we have left some food and water incase she wakes up in the winter months.
One of the young taking a drink, I also put a camera on them to make sure there healthy
Stay warm and enjoy the Autumn to come

Mike

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Marine life and time to move!!!

Well its been a month or two since last posting but there has been a good reason for it as I have been searching for my perfect home closer to the coast. I've started my search near wild coastal locations for doer uppers or something that needs a little bit of work. From the edge of Anglesey to the edge of Wales/Cheshire. Ive been working extra hours and prepping things for the day when I do finally make the move so when I find my dream place I can keep my orignal job and get things going for my future move.
While on Anglesey Wild camping last week we had some amazing locations to sleep at plus our wild camping kit/clothing is so refined now its quite a pleasant expirience sometimes I wish I could do it for a few months at a time.
Newborough at 6.30am on a late summers morning

I did some research on when the Rissos Dolphins show up in the area and previous years its been late August to end of September and we just missed them after sleeping one night off the coastal path with the previous afternoon and next morning we got some lovely encounters which you can see below including Porpoises with calfs, Seals and the odd Gannet.
 
Mother and calf
Seals coming close to the rocks where we waited for the marine life to breach

We did 5 nights camping 2 at one place, 2 at another and one at a new site but I won't reveal any of there locations as it took me a long time to find these spots where we can camp without being disturbed or disturbing anyone else so proper stealth camping.
Leave footprints take memories
When I got back from my trip I went up to Shining tor in the Peak District it has wonderful views and I felt so far from home even though it was about 2 hours walk from the bus station where I caught the bus to Macclesfield. I hope to do more Tors(Large hills) in the area over the Winter months. 
I saw my first CHESHIRE Wheatear in the area and heard from somewhere there are Choughs ringed on Anglesey have been in the Peak district area of Derbyshire so that would have been a alovely thing to hear.
Thanks for visiting and enjoy the start of Autumn

Regards

Mike