BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘wind’

#365daysifbiking Snoozing it out

February 7th – I have a new pair of pals and I’ve called them Arnold and Flossie.

This pair of young swan mates have been hanging about the canal at Bentley Bridge, between Pleck and Darlaston for a few weeks now and are surprisingly tolerant of human company.

I suspect they may well nest this year, which would be nice to see.

On this windy but otherwise pleasant, sunny morning they were both dozing on the towpath, out sheltering out of the wind when I stopped. They both listened while I talked to them and they allowed me to take photos without too much grumping.

I look forward top seeing more of these gorgeous characters in coming months.

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#365daysifbiking It’s a wee bit choppy

January 27th – At least it wasn’t raining.

At lunchtime, the wind was horrendous as I rode to Chasewater. Stood on the dam fighting it, it rose white-crested waves on the reservoir that broke angrily around the pier, shore and wakeboard ramps.

It was impressively dramatic but not an easy day to cycle on.

I suppose a clear day with little wind is too much to ask?

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#365daysifbiking Fifty shads of bloody grim

January 26th – The weather didn’t improve at all, and considerably worsened. It was windy, grey and grim. I slipped out briefly for a circuit around a wet, muddy canal at the fall of dusk and got wet and felt miserable.

The weather at the moment is warm, but not pleasant. I hope this isn’t a portent of a bad summer, but I guess we might be due one.

The only brightness was my favourite tree, the majestic horse chestnut at Home Farm, Sandhills, still looks wonderful and will soon, hopefully, be in leaf.

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#365daysofbiking Hard work:

November 9th – Heavy rain to and from work. High winds. Awful traffic.

This is the only image of the day, taken from the bike computer on the way home.

Never was the battle of a ride summed up better.

#365daysofbiking Lost weekend:

October 14th – Sunday was again bad for most of the daylight hours, only improving during the late afternoon. The wind had again been strong, and continual rain again kept me in. I got things done though, and that in itself made me feel better.

Nipping out for the shopping I’d forgotten the day before, I noted the swan family by Pelsall Road where thriving, and they didn’t seem to mind the gloom.

I’m curious though, about Morris and his lights: They haven’t actually been on the last couple of days at least. I wonder if they’re broken? That’s sad if they are.

#365daysofbiking Into the black:

October 13th – A dreadful, wet and dull day during which I got absolutely none of the things done I wanted to. High winds and rain meant I was hemmed in and my mood deteriorated.

Slipping out purely from necessity in the evening to get shopping and a takeaway, I forgot half of what I needed and the takeaway I’d planned as a pick me up wasn’t available.

A somnambulant Brownhills, even at the early hour of 7pm didn’t help.

This autumn is mad. One minute it’s sun and shirtsleeves, the next it’s like a typhoon.

This does nothing for my mood.

August 1st – One of the less obvious food sources for smaller birds like goldfinches are the wind-borne seeds of dandelions, ragwort, thistle and here, rosebay willowherb. Growing like buddleia in any urban setting where there’s a scrap of extractable nutrition, this prolific weed has gorgeous pink flowers and produces huge amounts of fluff, containing its seeds.

Small birds will spend ages on seedbeds picking out the tiny black seeds and gorging upon them. It’s fascinating to watch, and these are an excellent source of nutrition.

Everything has a purpose in nature.

July 25th – The thistles are still in flower, but now going over to seed too. This is great for many songbirds like goldfinches who like to eat the seeds, which are spread from the seed heads by the breeze, and to this end are attached to fluffy wind catchers to transport them in the air.

The fluff thistles generate – along with rose bay willowherb, or old man’s beard which is also in seed at the moment, was always called ‘fairies’ when I was a kid, and it was considered lucky to catch a ‘fairy’ on the wind.

They are actually rather beautiful.

April 22nd – An odd sight in spring is always the first wind-seeding wildflowers, in this case I’m not sure what it is, possibly hawkweed. It seems almost incongruous to see seed heads at this time of year, but most flowers who seed this way do so throughout the season. 

Such beautiful, silky fluff on this one.

March 18th – I thought Saturday had been grim. I had no idea just how unpleasantly bitter the wind – for that’s all it can be – would make a short ride on Sunday.

I pottered up to Chasewater again. Setting out in a partial thaw, I was surprised that within 30 minutes, package was hardening on roads and tracks and everything was freezing again. We’d had a fair old snowfall and Chasewater was beautiful for it – but it was very hard going. 

Trees at the lake edge on the causeway wore jackets of pure ice and the boardwalk over Fly Creek was flooded, as it always does when the main lake is full. Coming back i had to leave the canal towpath due to the deep drifts.

I haven’t known a winter this combative and protracted for years. When I got in the cold was physically painful. I’ve had enough now.