BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘sunny’

#365daysofbiking Opening out:

Tuesday March 16th 2021 – One aspect of my behaviour changed by the pandemic has been my avoidance of public transport, meaning longer commuting rides.

I’m back in Telford again regularly now, and generally only use the train between Wolverhampton and Telford, cycling to and from Wolverhampton, which takes far less time than I would have thought, and isn’t a bad ride, as it happens.

I finished work in Telford on a sunny, bright spring afternoon at 4pm, and decided to ride all the way home, to see how it was. It worked out OK: It wasn’t much longer in duration than using the train, and allowed me to avoid the busy roads around Wolverhampton, and also gave me chance to enjoy the lanes and villages of the landscape inbetween – including the wonderfully grandiose church at Tong.

I think I could get used to this as the days open out.

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#365daysofbiking Sky watching

May 16th – A day with little wind, beautiful skies and clear air, bathed in beautiful sunshine. There was nothing for it but to saddle up and head for my favourite haunts in East Staffordshire.

Heading out of Brownhills up over Shire Oak, a favourite view was captured, then through the lanes of Chesterfield and Shenstone, Weeford and Hopwas. From there, Wigginton, Rickerscote and Syerscote for one of my favourite lanes of all.

There’s something gorgeous about a summer day lane with open fields and no hedgerows.

I went then to Honey Hill and No Mans Heath, Netherseal, Lullington, Coton in the Elms and back through Catton, Whitemoor Haye, Huddlesford and Lichfield.

Not a massive ride by any stretch, but the skies and villages were perfect, and I’ll treasure my hours on these lockdown traffic-free roads for the rest of my life. I hardly saw a soul.

Times have been very hard indeed. But the sun and constancy of my beloved countryside is healing me with every ride now.

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#365daysofbiking A golden hour

March 27th – Slipping home in the early evening, I couldn’t resist that quick hop up the canal to see how my favourite tree over at Home Farm was doing. I thought maybe I could seee a hint of green on it, but I think it was wishful thinking.

I gauge the seasons by that venerable, perfectly shaped horse chestnut tree. It’s as part of my life as cycling or drinking tea.

And tonight, in this most imperial of golden hours, it looked splendid.

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#365daysofbiking A better taste

August 31st – I have no idea who this character is, but I’ve seen him a lot over the years. A large but nimble cat who always seems vaguely irritated to be observed, he seems to like the canalside scrub between the gardens of Lindon Drive and Silver Street, where only the anglers seem to get.

On a warm, sunny morning he was oh so thirsty, and no water tastes as good as fresh canal water…

A lovely lad clearly very irritated to be photographed!

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#365daysofbiking Sunspots

August 25th – On the way home I did a lazy loop of Shuttington, Seckington, Clifton Campville, Harlaston and Whittington. Amazingly, there were few folk around in the heat, and I had a lovely peaceful journey home.

At Shuttington, the neighbourhood watch was dozing, but not enough not to keep a close eye on me from an appropriately sun-bathed spot.

It’s nice to see cats enjoying the summer at last.

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#365daysofbiking De-stressing

August 13th – On the way back, it was still sunny and having got through my appointment quickly, I had time to dawdle on my way back. I’m glad I did, as near Bently Bridge on the Walsall Canal, I met another family of happy, content mallards being charming.

They weren’t bothered about me, and mama was happy to mind her loose group of developing ducklings from a relative distance as they dozed and chattered to each other in the sun.

Such a delightful little family. Just wthe kind of thing you need after a stressful task.

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#365daysofbiking The neighbourhood watch

July 14th – So pleased to see the cats out and about at last, as I noted last week. This ride was all about the cats.

As usual there are a whole variety in the feline watchers of life: From the lithe white puss resting in Kingsley Wood Road to the stately black and white overseer of the canal towpath. But the real star was Wilf, the ginger narrowboat cat who was helping his dad fishing.

I love to see cats out and about, it’s a real sign of summer and one I’ve really missed so far this year.

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#365daysofbiking Red is the colour

April 8th – Although the weather is improving with a change in wind direction (although still quite breezy) and sunny days, it seems the temperature is still staying stubbornly low. Perhaps it’s the early spring, but it feels like it should be way warmer at the moment to me.

Meanwhile, in Kings Hill Park, the deep red tulips are out and looking superb, with the rest of the park greening up beautifully. At least the chill should preserve the flowers for longer!

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August 6th – Heading along the Walsall Canal towards Darlaston Green and Bentley Bridge on a sunny Monday morning. Not a soul around, intense blue skies and just the sounds of waterfowl, birds and nearby industry.

I couldn’t be anywhere finer, to be perfectly honest. I love this place with all of my heart.

November 26th – Another day of beautiful light, but cold. Probably not cold for the time of year, but after recent mild weeks it seems to be positively arctic. 

I’d been doing a lot of mechanical work on the bike in recent days, and needed to test it with a shortish run with plenty of good hill action, so I went out early afternoon, over to Shenstone, Weeford, Hints, Hopwas, up the canal to Hademore and back in darkness through Wall and Chesterfield.

I took time to study the churches at Shenstone, Weeford and Hopwas – from the hideous but triumphant Gothic of Shenstone, to the farmhouse twee of Hopwas, all three are classics. All within a short distance.

Staffordshire is unusually blessed with a stunning and varied ecclesiastical architectural tradition.