BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘fog’

#365daysofbiking Living in another world

January 25th – Of course, I came back through Chasewater for a reason. I wanted to get Chasewater and the area surrounding in mist, when I actually had time to experiment.

As it happened the experiments pretty much all failed, but some notable successes – mainly by accident – were evident. The glass-hard Nine-Foot pool; Chasewater pier looking like something from a film set. The curing wall of LED streetlights over the distant sweep of the deserted M6 Toll. The eerie otherworldliness of the Black Path with its sodium and skeletal trees.

It did indeed seem like another world, but in that one my photographic talents sadly remained as erratic and hit and miss as in this one.

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#365daysofbiking Bending the light

January 25th – The mist still hadn’t lifted, and in fact it seemed to be becoming more dense.

I’d been over to Burntwood for an errand, and came back via Chasewater after dark, getting some shopping in on the way. As I rattled down the bumpy north shore path where it runs between the Rugby Club and Chasetown Bypass, concerned for the fragility of my purchases, I noticed the curving ‘wall of light’ effect of the streetlights on the fog, bending away from me like I was repelling it.

It was one of those moments when an unexpected, mundane scene caught a unique light and became precious.

Like Clayhanger did  a few days before. Low cloud does have its benefits, I guess.

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#365daysofbiking Diffuse

January 23rd – The murk continued through the next day, too, and it was beginning to get on my chest. Cycling in it, with it’s grim cocktail of traffic fumes, damp, road spray and smog is not inspiring.

However, I had to nip up to Coppice Side on the way home to see a pal. As I crossed the old Jolly Collier bridge, the urban lights and mist combined to make something special.

The diffuse glow of the gas discharge lamps suddenly made a very ordinary place extraordinary, and I was captivated.

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#365daysofbiking Mist but not missed


January 22nd – This is a very strange winter we’re having. I hope spring and summer prove more traditional. It’s not really been very cold, but it’s been horrendously wet. I’m so used to rain now that it barely surprises or bothers me, and I think I’m developing a love of it, like some weird meteorological Stockholm syndrome.

At the moment, the warm damp is masquerading as a heavy, cloying mist-drizzle that’s settled here for the best part of a week, really. It’s grimy and horrible to ride in, and is also keeping the fumes and smell down from the local landfills and industry, making the whole atmosphere feel dirty and polluted.

Leaving Bloxwich station I passed a couple of the town’s many backstreet boozers: The venerable Romping Cat, as classic a Black Country pub as one could find, and the more boisterous Spotted Cow, which despite a chequered history, hangs on as a popular local’s pub.

In the murky, nasty mist they looked beautifully warm and welcoming. I could have slipped in there and then for a pint.

But this wasn’t 1995, and that isn’t the current version of me. So I admired these watering holes from the street, remembered fondly long gone days with workmates and their many, many post-work pints, then rode home.

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#365daysofbiking Lighting the way

January 19th – A murky, misty, unpleasant day really. It was cold, and although the sun threatened to come through, it never really did here which was a disappointment.

I pottered around Brownhills and Chasewater, looking for good photos but the light was much worse than I was expecting it to be. But there were some good shots.

I was expecting it to make me feel better today, and for once, it didn’t.

Days like today make spring seem a very long way off.

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#365daysofbiking Conical

November 30th – Chasetown has Christmas lights for the first time in a long while too, which is nice to see. Oddly though, their two Christmas trees (which appear identical, which must be a clue to their origin) are artificial, conical arrangements covered in some kind of canvas.

There’s one at usual near the former police station, and one outside the new offices of Chasetown Civil Engineering.

They’re interesting things, not entirely sure I like them but they are very striking.

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#365daysofbiking Fade from grey

November 30th – A misty, murky day definitely not conducive to good photography. It had been very frosty, but by the time I had change to get out with time on my hands, the frost had gone.

I had business in Burntwood and went via Chasewater and Brownhills Common – the dam looked really eerie in the fog. Spiderwebs on gorse caught water droplets and became precious.

A cold, grey but starkly beautiful day.

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#365daysofbiking I mist again

February 14th – An early morning train commute to Telford was gorgeous on a beautiful, late winter morning. It was cold with a lingering frost, but the low, clinging mist rendered everything it touched precious when the sun caught it.

From Grove Hill and Stonnall to Mill Green and Little Aston, this morning was a joy to be on a bike. I wouldn’t have missed this for the world – my only regret was that I couldn’t enjoy it for longer.

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#365daysofbiking Into the murk

January 10th – A grey, damp and misty day made for trying journeys to and from work, with frenetic, inattentive traffic and poor visibility with a somewhat patchy, unpredictable kind of fog.

There was no escape, but diving onto the canal at the Black Cock Bridge for the last run to Brownhills was a welcome respite from the tension.

Clayhanger bridge wasn’t terribly mist-shrouded, but the hazy air made for a great twist on one of my favourite local muses.

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#365daysofbiking The last embers of the day:

November 23nd – Coming home from Birmingham on the train, I again alighted at Shenstone, but returned via the backlands on a misty, mystical and enchanting evening.

These were the last hours of the heaviest working week for a long time. But at home there was food, tea, warmth, cosiness, and peace, which made the last climb over sShire Oak Hill much easier.