ABOUT ME

I live in a camper van with a couple of West Highland Terriers for company.
My passion is photography but it is a work in progress.
I am always willing to share what knowledge I have and can be contacted through the comments on this post or e-mail ADRIAN
ALL IMAGES WILL ENLARGE WITH A LEFT CLICK

Monday, 30 January 2012

WINTER IS HERE. (29/01/12)

By Gum! What a wonderful morning. I went out for a quick stroll and was gone for four hours. It was overcast but frosty and bright. Wonderful!

_1291199_200_201_202_203_tonemapped_edited-1    The view from Scarr Head looking towards Coniston.

On we wandered on the old packhorse trail that skirts The Old Man of Coniston. Plenty of water in the becks.

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Torver Beck as it exits the old slate quarry…….This is an area well worth exploring. It looks an eyesore but has numerous hidden waterfalls.

_1291230_2_tonemapped_edited-1     The quarry.

_1291234_5_6_7_8_tonemapped_edited-1    The sheep bottom right give an idea of scale. It would be a grand place on a sunny day.

_1291244_5_6_7_8_tonemapped_edited-1  I’ve still not reached the snowline but can just see the lake.

_1291254_5_6_7_8_tonemapped_edited-1   A packhorse bridge.

con2 291   This was about as far as I got. The col is Goats Hawse with Dow Crag to it’s left and a bit of the Old Man of Coniston to the right. A wonderful and uplifting day.

_1291284_5_6_7_8_tonemapped_edited-1 The view back home and a well earned Sunday lunch.

I am here till the Keswick site opens on Thursday, then booked into there till the following Tuesday then back here for a few days. Let’s hope this weather holds. It’s grand.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

STUCK IN CHURCH. (29/01/12)

Saturday was a great day. The earlier part of the week was a total write off. Rain, wind, sleet and hail disgusting it was. The sun came out yesterday and temperatures fell to freezing.

I am just outside Coniston in a little hamlet called Torver. I have no internet so posts will be a bit hit and miss, mostly miss!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    Life could be a whole lot worse. I’m parked at the rear of this wonderful pub. Good beer, good food and some of the finest company one could imagine. It has WiFi…..sometimes. I’ll try and find a sometimes and get this away today.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA       St Luke's is right next door so at a pinch if the Church House Inn runs out of beer I can try for some spiritual guidance here.

conpan1      The Old Man of Coniston……In an hour I’ll take the dogs and see how hard the snow is. It only fell over the last two days and so is probably too soft for the dogs to manage.

_1281173_4_5_6_7_tonemapped_edited-1      Lake Coniston from Torver Jetty. Looking north.

_1281183_4_5_6_7_tonemapped_edited-1      Looking south.

_1281188_89_90_91_92_tonemapped_edited-1Just looking.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA All in all a wonderful place. I’m here till mid week then hopefully I’ll get up to Keswick. Then it’s back here.

I’ll try to do some catching up if I can whip their router into order.

Have a great week…..I’ll see you as and when I can.

Monday, 23 January 2012

A YEAR OLDER…..BUT WISER? (23/01/12)

I’m back at Lowthrop Fell…..you remember pie country from a couple of weeks ago.

I have to sort out my finances, pay my bills, get paid or not, spend time studying new investments like the National Lottery. The latter have actually lost far less on my pound a week investment than the Royal Bank Of Scotland. I’m twenty two pounds fifty pence in front. Not six grand behind. Bastards….Fat bastards. And bugger all dividend. Fatter fat bastards!

I wonder if Her majesty the Queen has ever considered her liability here. She wanders about sniffing fresh paint but to some of us ‘Royal’ means something…..I have never been sure what the something is…..I suspect it’s something I don’t understand. A bit like religion…it gives solace if one doesn’t question ones betters.

On no account give them money. Back your local crack dealer. It’s the way forward……financially.

The Americas (far north to far south) seem pleased to see Royals. They’d be on the streets and punching or worse if such a figure appeared in their democracies, plutocracies/ plutarchies and in odd cases, juntas and out and out dictatorships. I suspect we live and try to survive in the penultimate two categories…… I’m not sure. No choice is there? The fat cats always get fatter, fact of life!

Now I’ve had a couple of comments about comments or to be precise lack of them or the ability to post them. Fair enough!…..You are all blogging because you find satisfaction in doing so. Google do their best. I think they are doing nine out of ten best.

First, any problems read Blogger Buzz. If you are anything like me you will find it unintelligible. Second download Google Chrome, it’s free gives them some money, more than Queeny does, it helps to keep Blogger free. Not just financially free but really free….like pubs used to be…a state of mind free.

Most of us sort of blundered our way in, some had help setting up their blog.

Keep abreast of what is what and embrace change or discard it as I do…..I suspect it’s why you were in Blogland to start with. Go back to your roots and expect a bit of work for your pleasure. I want to keep my blog pure and simple. I don’t want flash backs or anything else. Background images, the awful new blog interface that takes ten minutes to load. I want it there and in my face. No pissing about. DeeBee are you listening?

When all that fails go to MARK AT CODE FOR COFFEE DRINKERS. (It’s something along those lines). He can sort stuff ‘quick sticks’ and even I can understand what he’s saying. It always works but I never trust myself, I copy my current template to my desktop prior to arsing about….Arsing about means messing in the gobbledegook of advanced settings it involves HTML or Java Script. I suspect they may be one and the same. Most likely the same as Geordie, Erse and Scots  is to the pinched bum language HRH Queeny speaks I find them all equally unintelligible.

Don’t panic! Leave that to me!

……last January I recalled being a great month…..I've just gone through my pictures …..it was just as bad as this one.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe most famous lake in the Lakes….. Windermere.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  The dogs had had a hair cut.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Today they are scruffy mutts. Funny how a year on it’s still Moll who is ready to escape and Alf who follows. They are away to Keswick next week for a haircut. I’ve now got them trained. No matter what they are doing I whistle and they come back……when they have finished what they were doing!

You will find, if you fancy commenting that comments fly up in a pop up menu. I like embedded comments so enjoy luditeville whilst you can. I will go back to embedded a week from now. Remember, I don’t ever ask you to type daft words. I appreciate the daft words you have typed, I hope we have a reciprocal policy here!

I do have odd problems with funny folk. The majority I delete. The minority of the head bangers are good. I reply. It takes all sorts to make a world.

Have fun,

Sunday, 22 January 2012

CANTANKEROUS (22/01/12)

The weather and I. A proper Victor Meldrew day. I hadn't walked a mile through ankle deep sludge this morning when back came the wind and rain. I retreated got back home soaked,  before the kettle had boiled out came the sun. I’d decided to give the truck a polish inside. Three hours later the sun was still shining so we went out. This time I’d glooped and slurped my way a couple of miles when down came the rain again. The dogs are filthy. Little point in cleaning the van, little point in doing anything.

Tomorrow, I'm having a couple of days on a proper campsite. Washing machines, showers the works. I’ll finish the spring clean and then I'm going up to Coniston for a few days. The weather forecast is for more of the same. Mild and wet……it does get unbearable. January is the worst month for being in the camper. Sites that are otherwise open tend to shut this month. So choice is limited to the very expensive or with a few exceptions places I don’t want to go.

Next week Keswick is open so the dogs can have a hair cut. I could do with one but I’ve got used to the wild and woolly look.

I’m sitting here waffling on and moaning. I waiting for the starlings to come back.

I had an unusual visitor to the feeders. It had it’s back to me and the lack of light prevented any worthwhile pictures. It had a red head was about sparrow sized so either a linnet or red poll. A posh bird whichever it was. It’s not been back………I don’t believe it! I bet the damn kestrel ate it.

The sky cleared and the starlings started to appear. They seemed to be heading straight to the roost. I was lucky last week.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA This is a picture of Wastwater and Yewbarrow taken in February two years ago. There is still hope for some winter.

Have a grand week.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

LIGHT AND DARK (21/01/12)

The dogs and I enjoyed a rain free walk down through the reserve. It is very windy, very little about. Two Puma helicopters passed low overhead and then the Pheasant shooting got underway so most birds had dived for cover.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         The Causeway.

_1211122_3_4_5_6_tonemapped_edited-1  Light on Leighton Moss. There is not much light but a lot more than yesterday.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         Grey Lag Geese.

I sat around waiting for otters but not a sign today. They are elusive animals. The Marsh Harrier was irritating the Wigeon. I’ve never seen it catch one but presumably it must. It has to live on something! Whilst down at Leighton Moss I called in at the shop. I needed a new fat ball feeder. The bloody pheasants have broken the old one.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                       The female woodpecker approves. I suspect there are two pairs here now as the feeder usually has one on it. They fly off in different directions.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                        For some inexplicable reason they seem frightened of the Long-tailed Tits. These turn up twice an hour a dozen or more at a time. A grand little bird.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                      The Nuthatch is getting brave or hungry.

Another half hour till the starlings come back…..it’s not looking good it’s far too dark to see them. I really hate this weather. There are breaks in the cloud but not for long and the wind is ferocious. A wonder there are any birds around at all.

I’ll see what tomorrow brings. More vile rain and wind I expect. It really is depressing.

I hope you are enjoying a more clement weekend.

Friday, 20 January 2012

PRECIPITATION (20/01/12)

What an awful day……it’s too dark for pictures and too wet to enjoy a walk. I ran out of water, bad management or too many showers? So I got another soaking filling the water tank.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   Leighton Moss last week.

If you feel like a laugh and a bit of Photoshop tuition then have a look here.

Tales from an English Coffee Drinker.

I’m hoping for a better day tomorrow. Not praying….I’ve tried that and it doesn’t seem very efficacious.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

I’M HAPPY (19/01/12)

It’s been a peculiar morning. Vicious hail squalls just prior to and just after dawn. They coincided with my visit to Leighton Moss…….lovely it was! Last week when I was here I saw an otter, another visitor said if I went out at dawn then there were usually three swimming around. They were somewhere else this morning. I’ll try again tomorrow. On the way back a rabbit shot across the track and a second later a weasel in hot pursuit. Good job the dogs were on the lead! It could so easily have been akin to a scene out of the Keystone Cops. Rabbit…weasel…terrier…terrier all heading over the horizon. As an aside I never realised a weasel could move so fast. Impressive it was. The rabbit escaped. I love the wildlife here. Kestrel, buzzard, merlin and marsh harrier all chasing the little birds. It doesn’t put them off, the feeders are doing brisk business.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    This is a big hit……It was on special offer down at the funny farm. £1.30p a bag, if memory serves me correctly. It’s not as good as the picture on the bag but does include meal worms, dried berries and suet. They love it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    Whilst on food this is Cullen Skink. A meal I find irresistible. It has to be made with properly smoked fish, not the dyed stuff which is revolting. Like a curry it is better left for a day.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA              This is one strange pheasant. The Thai ladyboy of the pheasant world?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA              There are some strange pheasants here. This lady is convinced she is a blue tit. 

            OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                    I’ve moved the feeder nearer the hedge. The kestrels are a real pain to the little birds. I do like raptors but dive bombing my feeder without posing is a big No, No!

I’ll try for proper pictures tomorrow. Have a good day.

 

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

BACK IN NO-MANS LAND (18/01/12)

It’s a very slow news day so click out now or be bored. I have a very strange sparrow visiting the feeders it feeds on the ground like a chaffinch. It has the same markings as a sparrow but more contrast and it’s a wee bit bigger. I’ll try and snap it. I suspect it’s a Spanish Sparrow it keeps going……… Que! Que!

I arrived back at Grisedale Farm this morning. I hadn’t even stopped the truck and pheasants were running towards me. On the way I did a Booth’s shop….the Cumbria and north Lancashire Tescbury’s. More Waitrose really.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         Feeders set up and a bit of bread thrown out and a dozen were happily gorging themselves, ten days and they will be safe from shotgunists. Does anyone eat pheasant eggs? They are no sport as DeeBee commented about a week ago. The wee things can hardly fly and are almost tame. A lovely bird but in the males case a bit thick.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  Does my bum look big on this feeder? No love! The feeder is small……………………….. I know the words!

I swapped my gas regulator. New years day I swapped a bottle and it’s threads were all anyhow. Much like me! These are for nothing a fiver sterling. Cheaper than fags…..Don’t tell Dithery Dave. Please! That fat bastard will tax them.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA This is the old one…..I have to have a habitation check on the camper……four hundred ponds for some numpty to find fault with gas or electric……..I’ll take a chance. This is purported to be crimp connected to the gas hose….Rubbish! The regulations say hose clip…..in the UK we call them Jubillee Clips.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    I’m a pie man….it’s a week and more since I saw a good pie. Just to balance my diet I’m cooking Cullen Skink for tea. It’s fish stew. The Scots got it half right. I add onion and prawns and cheese….forgot to mention the potato milk and smoked haddock. It is nirvana. Tip some cream in at the last minute and it is orgasmic.

I’ll leave you with this……..My bum isn’t big. I can fit a garden bird feeder.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA              No worries, she is a handsome bird. As I write she is back using her wing for stabilisation….little minx.

Have fun, see you tomorrow.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

A GOOD WEEKEND (17/01/12)

I have had a weekend off. One night at the Old Hill Inn and one at the Station Inn. Yes I did have a little more of the falling down water than I should have. I didn’t fall down though.

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_1161076_77_78_79_80_tonemapped_edited-1Ribblehead railway viaduct. Not a cloud in the sky, a beautiful weekend.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASee!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The Station Inn. I’ve driven past it many times but this is the first time I’ve stopped. It’s a grand place.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The dogs soon made themselves at home.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Landlady Jo. It’s well worth a stop.

Tomorrow I’m going back to Leighton Moss for a week and then on to Patterdale. I have done a Seeing to Pictures today should anyone be interested. Feed back as ever will be gratefully received.

Have a good week.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

ALL IN ALL A GOOD ONE (15/01/12) PART TWO

These are mostly from yesterday a few of the feeder ones have been snapped over the past few days.

In an hour or so I am heading off to The Old Hill Inn which lies in the shadow of Ingleborough. If I’m fit enough tomorrow I’ll have a wander up it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA       Frosty vans at dawn.

_1141001_2_3_4_5_fused_edited-1      I had a really good walk and found this barn and a small tractor. All I did find!

_1141006_07_08_09_10_fused_edited-1      Just after I took this the sky turned almost black with geese and ducks. The shooters are out today massacring pheasant. I bet the birders were happy. I can imagine just getting set up in a hide and all the birds heading west as fast as they can. It could have been worse the shotgunners could have been wildfowlers!

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Male and female Pheasant……there are anything up to a dozen visiting the feeders. In two weeks they will be safe for another year.

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Long-tailed Tits and a Blue Tit. There are dozens of each here.

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Greater Spotted Woodpecker and a Robin.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    The starlings almost stole the show for me but by a short head, the socially and intellectually  challenged among,  the visitors to RSPB Leighton Moss have beaten them. I’ve had so many conversations, most informative and pleasant but at least one a day which was almost surreal. Hard to pick a favourite but…….I was passing the public Hide on the causeway when the girls from the stables caught up exercising the horses….I was just passing the time of day with them whilst the dogs had a sniff when the hide door opened and out reversed a chap, tripod and giant spotting scope. He turned round and said… Bloody hell! What’s that? I told him They were Horses! It’s nice to be able to return an ID. favour to a birder.

I’ll be incommunicado for a couple of days. Then I’m coming back here. It’s a grand spot.

Have a good week.