BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘Stonnall’

#365daysofbiking Saved by the bell

April 30th – It’s nice to see a good showing of bluebells this year. The slightly earlier, brassier Spanish varies are copious, as are the more delicate, darker native variety here.

Right now, hedgerows, woodlands, verges and ditches are alive with shades of purple and blue and it’s rather gorgeous.

L adore spring, and I love bluebells particularly.

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#365daysofbiking A small ‘slip

March 20th – As if to cement my good feeling, on a grass verge in Stonnall, an annual first and my favourite flower: The cowslip.

These tough, beautiful little primroses are my absolute favourite flower and it’s always wonderful to welcome them back into my life.

Let’s hope this solitary soldier is the first of a record year!

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#365daysofbiking Looks like I made it

March 20th – In the backlanes between Shenstone and Stonnall, on the way home from the station late on a sunny, warm spring afternoon.

Feeling the sun on my face, looking at the daffodils and green, and smelling the rising of the sap and the scents of earth and fresh growth, I realise I survived another long winter, and there’s nowhere I’d rather be than here, right now.

The winter hasn’t been a harsh one. But my goodness I found it tough.

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#365daysofbiking Often overlooked

March 15th – One of the nicer, more beautiful and sadly neglected flowers of the spring is the pussy willow. I spotted this one as dusk fell on the Chester Road near Shire Oak.

These complex, pretty catkins start as grey, furry buds and change as they bloom fully to a bright yellow green bay of stamen filaments which are actually fascinating when you look close up.

Sadly, not many folk ever seem to notice…

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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 Hello old friends

February 12th – One of the most reliable indicators of an ending winter are the daffodils on the corner of Wood Lane and Chester Road near the (soon to be closed) Wyevale garden centre.

Every year without fail they are the earliest patch of wild daffodils I see, usually appearing in the second or third week of February.

This morning, they were blooming bright yellow for my as I rode to the station, like old pals stand at the roadside to greet me.

Hello, old friends. Welcome back. Good to see you, and the springtime you bring. Looks like we both survived another long, dark winter.

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#365daysofbiking Crossover point

 

February 11th – Riding back from Shenstone Station in the region of 6pm. Still just about light at Fighting Cocks.

this time next week it will be merely twilight here at this time.

On the darkening lane, the trees and farm buildings silhouetted agains the western sky, this was beautiful, but chilly. I loved the effect of the passing cars.

Slowly but surely the daylight’s winning the battle.

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#365daysofbiking Oh flock

Boxing Day – Another day pressed for time, so another short but fast run up the canal. Intrigued to see that there is a flock of several hundred sheep grazing on what I think might be kale on Home Farm, Sandhills.

I don’t think I’ver ever seen livestock on this land before.

I wonder if the sheep are resident on the farm now, or if the crop has been sold for grazing?

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#365daysofbiking Trail blazing

December 21st – Summerhill motorway bridge on a dry evening is the ideal place to try long exposure photography, with the opportunity presented by the  motorway below and also down the A461 from kerb level.

Today is a turning point: Not just last day of work for 2018, but the shortest day. Today, I have beaten The Suck – the darkening, grim winter commutes when traffic is bad and huge riding concentration is required. From today, the days will lengthen, sunset will get later and later and the driving will actually improve.

Regardless of the weather, the light will return and things will get better. Today was a turning point, and a very welcome one.

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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.