BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘autumn’

#365daysofbiking Disturbing the locals

November 21st – I had to visit a client on the far side of Hortonwood in Telford, and since I’m not keen on riding through that huge industrial estate, I stayed on the train to wellington and rode from there.

It was dry, and there was a cycleway all the way there, pretty much, which was a delight if confusing at times.

Autumn made west Hortonwood look gorgeous – it’s a lot more like Stafford Park on this side, leafy and quiet with lots of small units.

I found a trail into the heart of where I needed to be from the residential area called Trench, and on the way up the leaf-covered byway, I was monitored by this delightful member of the local neighbourhood watch.

That’s a splendid set of whiskers.

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#365daysofbiking Dark, dark heart

November 15th – It had, at least, stopped raining. I arrived in Brownhills to overcast skies but thankfully, for once, dry.

I stopped to re-tie my lace at Ravens Court, the derelict, abandoned shopping precinct in the middle of Brownhills.

Beyond me in the heart of darkness there are no longer any shops in the place, and it sits, gently decaying, unloved and beyond the reach of anyone who cares to sort it out.

One day it will be gone, and this sad place will no longer be a focus for that which ails our town. But until then, it makes for a very eerie night image.

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#365daysofbiking A rare burst of sunlight

November 13th – The day was better; better not just in the weather, but in the fact that I was back in Darlaston and not stuck in the hell of the local train service that seems lately to have staggered to a grim halt.

Victoria Park was showing well her autumn coat of many colours and was gorgeous in the late morning as I slid through it on an errand. Oh for the absence of rain, a little sun on my face and for the brightness of a dappled sky!

What has this autumn’s weather been so rotten?

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#365daysofbiking Tilt

November 10th – The morning had been sunny and the afternoon grey but clear – a better day for sure than the washout of the previous one. But everything was sodden, and cycling was still…. Challenging.

Wet leaves, mud, huge puddles made the going tough but it was nice to be out.

The rain had washed most of the leaves off the trees at The Parade, meaning the really beautiful period had been transitory, like so many times of beauty this year. Such is life.

My companion went for a low angle and tilted the camera noting that the trees all had a windswept tilt, too -, and although not mine, this shot encapsulates the feeling so well, it would be a crime not to use it.

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#365daysofbiking Kingdom of rain

November 9th – It rained all day, and into the night. A wet, horrible day stuck indoors working on DIY around home and trying to keep busy.

I slipped out after dark to do some essential shopping. Everywhere was saturated – we really are in a wet spell now. It seems like it’s been raining for weeks, although probably not; yet I don’t think I’ve every known such a miserable, wet autumn.

Brownhills and Silver Street were deserted. Anyone with any sense was inside, not out with me in this kingdom of rain. For once, I couldn’t blame them.

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#365daysofbiking Leaf it out

November 8th – Later, on the cycleways of Telford, IU was reminded of a seasonal hazard – greasy, wet fallen leaves.

When leaves lie on the ground and it rains, the action of wheels and feet mulches the whole lot into a slippery, soapy goop that can steal your wheels from under you and make stopping highly unpredictable, especially on a road bike.

I was reminded of this speeding downhill for the train. Thankfully, I didn’t come to any harm, but be careful, folks.

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#365daysofbiking Milling it over

November 7th – A better day than the previous, but only really for being shorter, sadly. I had business in Chasetown so left work while it was still light and headed up there on the canal passing through Brownhills on the way.

It rained lightly most of the time. This weather is getting beyond a joke now.

Approaching the old steam mill at Ogley Hay, Brownhills, the view is lovely at the moment, even for the very poor weather and light. With the bracken and leaves turning, the hedgerows and woods are a beautiful mixture of burnt yellows and reds, with a smattering of green to boot.

The mill, of course, is now private flats and rather splendid; and it of course gave it’s name to the nearby Millfield school, which also backs onto the canal. One mystery, though: The former narrowboat the school had as an outdoor classroom – Tucana – seems to have been missing two or three weeks now.

It has no engine, so it must have been towed somewhere, to do something…

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#365daysofbiking Up the junction


November 2nd – Busy this weekend with stuff at home, so I’m mostly riding out on errands to get materials and suchlike. At lunchtime I had to head over to a DIY store in Chasetown, so in steady drizzle, I took to the canal. The towpaths were sodden, but the riding surprisingly fast.

I’m glad I’ve got stuff to do, this autumn has been terrible for cycling generally, and we’ve had more lost weekends than Lloyd Cole. Were I stuck inside without occupation, I’d be going stir crazy by now. I’m sure of it.

Crossing Ogley Junction over that imperious old iron footbridge, the canal looked grey and foreboding. But I was wrapped up well, warm and dry underneath. Getting past this may take what seems like an age, but better days will come, the sun will return and in a few months, we’ll have daffodils and daylight once more.

All I’ve got to do is hang in there.

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#365daysofbiking Autumn trails

November 1st – I was working from home and had to pop to Chasetown. On my return I came back across Anglesey Wharf Heath from Paviours Road to the M6 Toll canal bridge.

Although the day was murky and damp, the scenery along the way was beautifully coloured in all the shades of autumn.

I’m. not happy summer ended but I might as well enjoy autumn while it lasts I guess…

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