BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘Walsall Wood’

#365daysofbiking Suckback

September 30th – The first commute in darkness and bad weather of the autumn is always a shock, and this one was dreadful.

The Suck – the name for the gradually darkening, dangerous and unpleasant evening commutes up until Christmas – is a harrowing time.

A combination of bad weather, drivers unused to otherwise familiar journeys now in darkness and lack of patience make for a psychologically and physically difficult time to be on a bike.

It had taken a good ten minutes longer to grind home – and I was still a good way away. I was wet, cold and had a number of very close passes despite lights and hi-vis.

If I could just fast forward to Christmas when the light creeps back and people have settled down, that would be great cheers.

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#365daysofbiking Slightly unreal

September 23nd – Another late night at work and there was little for it but to grab a takeaway on the way home – and thin pickings on a Monday meant calling in at Walsall Wood.

The rain had been back and I managed to tuck the homeward commute in-between periods of rain.

I thought I’d give the phone a chance to display it’s prowess with it’s lauded night mode on St John’s Church, Walsall Wood.

Oh my goodness.

This is odd. I’m not sure if I like it. There’s a lot – and awful lot – of HDR there. It seems almost unnaturally sharp. But it’s visually stunning. I have no idea what to make of this at all.

Close up the quality is not great, I have to say. These images were ever destined for social media though, and I’m being way too critical.

But blimey, there’s a thing to experiment with…

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#365daysofbiking Crosstown traffic

September 20th – That evening, coming up from Stonnall as dusk fell I was, as I usually am, held at the lights.

There are few homecomings more significant to me that this small, triumphant wait – having climbed a large hill, all that’s left between me, a mug of tea, home and family – and often, the food in the pannier – is a long, pleasurable freewheel down the hill, over Anchor Bridge and into Brownhills.

Just got to wait for the lights, and I’m nearly there…

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#365daysofbiking The colour scheme

September 16th – But of course, in time autumn brings it’s own colours, and in their way, they can be every bit as vivid as those of summer.

The canalside hedgerows near Walsall Wood are looking particularly attractive right now… so all is not lost.

All the seasons have beauty and positivity. Sometimes you just have to look harder to find it.

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#365daysofbiking Sunset mellow


August 31st – Nipping up to Walsall Wood that evening to see a friend, I passed the pithead sculpture, which always looks dramatic with a good dusk sky behind it.

A structure I’ve never been fond of, it can look fantastic in the right kind of light.

I’m concerned to see the metal flag has sheared off, presumably from repeated wind-flexing. Good job nobody was under it when it dropped. That would have been sharp.

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#365daysofbiking Happy families

August 19th – On the way home from a tiring, enervating day, I met these bandits by Clayhanger Bridge.

The family of five I think are the ones that hatched up by Newtown on the canal to Chasewater, and they’re cheeky, bold and in good health. The youngsters are adult sized now and their pecks – even playful ones – come sharp and hard.

Once they realised I had no treats to give and pecking my shoes made no impact, they happily pottered off back to browsing the weed under the watchful eye of mum.

Further towards Catshill, I saw the family of four who I think hatched in Walsall Wood. That means that with the watermead two, six swans locally have raised 11 offspring this year. Not too bad going, I think.

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#365daysofbiking Well spotted

July 17th – Near Jockey Meadows on the way home, I stopped to take a call on the phone, and whilst mooching around on handsfree, I noticed this 10 spot ladybird in the adjacent hedge.

It appears to be native and not a an invasive harlequin, and yes, 10 spot ladybirds often have 12 spots apparently! There’s a similar yellowish harlequin but the pattern is markedly different and there’s no tell-tale dimple on the rear of the wing cases on this one.

I guess I must have done but I don’t recall seeing one this yellow before. A rather charming and endearing find – and the client who called me had no idea what I was doing.

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#365daysofbiking Chirrup, it’s Monday morning

June 24th – When I left for work on a decent but grey Monday, I took to the canal with a heavy heart.

It wasn’t long though before something cheered me up – the Walsall Wood swan family, chirruping to each other as they begged for treats in Walsall Wood.

Such a cheerful, delightful family, always under the watchful eye of mum and dad.

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