a bit of a soggy ramble

Today’s been one of those sunny-showery days, gloriously bright one minute, squally rain and wind the next, so you never quite know whether to run outside or hide inside with hot chocolate.

I compromised by doing both.

This morning I ran around our local parkrun (using the term ‘running’ very loosely, as usual), and got proper soaked in the process. Then I skipped the Women’s Institute (shocking, I know) to head over to an open day at a local(ish) community farm I’d never been to on the other side of town.

Turns out I still haven’t been because I couldn’t find it! Couldn’t see directions on their website, and the directions I found for an old event of theirs led me to a very nice, but very empty, field. At that point I was quite glad I hadn’t walked 4 miles to get there, as it had started raining again.

Back in the car, and typically the sun came out, so I did a little detour and went for an amble through the Rivelin Valley instead.

I don’t come here often enough (I say that about a lot of places!) The problem with this place is not that it’s far from home, because it’s not, but it’s a good couple of miles vertically downwards, which means it’s a good couple of miles vertically back up again to get home… And because it’s not that far, I’m usually loathe to drive it. Which then means I never go. Which is ridiculous.

Rivelin Valley is another one of those valleys that heads right out from the city to the peak district. It’s not quite as busy as Endcliffe Park, as it starts a little further away from the city centre, but it’s still well used, and is in easy reach of plenty of residential parts of the city. Didn’t see many people out today, but then it was absolutely freezing and raining a lot of the time, so they were probably all doing something more sensible.

Ah, there you go, that lovely sunshine at the beginning of my walk has been replaced by grey clouds, and you can see the raindrops starting to sploosh in the river.

I didn’t risk the stepping stones today, some of them were half submerged and they all looked quite slippery, and I didn’t fancy having to wait half an hour to be hauled out by a guffawing dog walker.

This river, and the others that run between the seven hills of Sheffield, gave the city its industrial start, by providing water and power for early industry. This one apparently had forges and flour mills once, and every now and again you come across old bits of machinery dotted along the river.

Hmm, the rain’s getting heavier… but turn round and there’s blue sky! Maybe it’ll catch up with me eventually…

Clearly not yet – even the ducks don’t seem to be enjoying themselves.

Turned out to be quite an informative walk – I never knew corset bones were made in these woods!

I don’t know how this little flower has managed to hold on this far, but there it was, clinging to the banks of the river. It’s been really quite warm round here for this time of year, and has only got cold in the past day or two, so in the gardens there’s still plenty of flowers when there wouldn’t usually be I don’t think. Our fuchsia is still a riot of colour – I might dress it up in a bit of tinsel if it carries on like this.

As I walked along I was trying to figure out whether it was autumn or winter. I usually think of winter as being December, January and February, but looking at the colours of the trees I decided we were definitely still at the tail end of autumn.

It wasn’t a very energetic walk, this one, and I think I spent more time taking photographs than I did actually walking. In fact, I also spent rather a long time leaning on trees, watching the patterns of the rain and the wind reflected in the water.

Speaking of water, there were some very odd things going on with the river.

Blue water? Well, of course, when you draw pictures, you always draw the water blue (I do anyway), but how often do you actually see blue water?? Quite a fetching shade of blue as well I thought – but rather out of place. Felt a little eerie even. Any clues?? The first thing that jumped to mind was blue-green algae, not because I have any knowledge of it, but just because that’s what I think it should look like… I’ll investigate.

The orange is more easily explained, I believe, by natural iron deposits. Or then again it might be copper. Or possibly peat. Oh dear, I hope you didn’t come here looking for information or anything!

Anyway, after an hour or two of ambling around in the rain under the trees, I was rather cold and wet. Home, then, to spend the rest of the afternoon ensconced in the living room with some tasty bread, goats cheese, acres of newspaper, a rather festive cake, and several nice cups of tea.

Hope you enjoyed my little (r)amble! I’m thinking of taking another one tomorrow… Not sure where yet though!

(oh, and I’ve now found out where the community farm is – several hours too late! Ah well, something to look forward to in the new year I suppose…)

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6 Responses to a bit of a soggy ramble

  1. Maria says:

    gorgeous photos! it looks like a really nice valley – and so good you could make the best of out a mixed-weather day šŸ™‚

  2. Fay says:

    I do miss rivers – what a lovely amble – gorgeous me lady – glad you didn’t get soaked if you did the stepping stones – loved the bryophyte photo – gorgeous.

    Pity you didn’t find the farm – but what an adventure you had.

    šŸ™‚

  3. Mum says:

    Looks like you had a lovely day. Were you not tempted to paddle across the water and sit in the chair? You’d have had trouble stopping me if I’d been with you! x

  4. linniew says:

    I totally enjoyed sharing your walk. I love all the artifacts from human habitation, the steps, the little bridges and even the iron pieces. Reminds me of Tolkien. In my state (Oregon, far west) the rivers are glorious but wild, less altered by people (unless they flow through cities of course), and less accessible. I would love the opportunity to walk in Scotland and England. There seem to be so MANY walks. We have public lands: parks in cities (I’m not in a city) and then national forests or state parks, usually a far drive away. Your standing in the rain to take pictures to share was much appreciated!

  5. Vix (vl2588) says:

    Hmm blue water is rather strange, doesn’t look like blue-green algae to me but not sure. The red is probably iron, but can be caused by a bacterium as well – if you stick a twig in it and make a hole in the colour it’s probably the bacterial kind (can also be associated with an alga).

    Looks idyllic, it’s definitely my ambition to live somewhere where there are such beautiful places to walk šŸ™‚

  6. Thanks folks šŸ™‚

    Mum – strangely, there were two men emerging from a hole in the wall into the rive in bare feet! No idea how they got in there in the first place, or how they could stand being in the water when it was so freezing (or why!)

    Fay – bryophyte?? I assume that’s what I was thinking of as a ‘pretty little pink flower’? šŸ™‚ šŸ™‚

    Maria, Vix, LinnieW… I do love it round here, and one of my intentions in starting this new blog was to get me out and about to the beautiful places that I don’t usually go to! We are lucky here in the middle of the country, perched on the edge of both a large city and a national park, we’ve got the best of both worlds, and there’s so much scenery within walking distance. Most of it is altered by humans, we just don’t have the space you have over there Linnie! But still beautiful though šŸ™‚

    Glad you all liked it! (today’s walk wasn’t quite so pretty, and was considerably wetter, but did involve more cake. Pics later…)

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