Flower show in Snowshill

Every time I go to the Cotswolds, I marvel at the honey-coloured houses and the immaculate front gardens everyone seems to have. I sometimes wonder if the area is inhabited by retired gardeners; perhaps to incentivise them, people are rewarded with a prize each year for best garden; or, maybe, cultivating a beautiful garden is … Continue reading / view photos Flower show in Snowshill

Hay Bluff and Hay-on-Wye

Friday was probably the hottest day in the UK this year. We felt the heat walking up Hay Bluff. The photo of it doesn’t do justice to the steep (but short) ascent. It was an enjoyable short circular walk before driving to Hay-on-Wye, the UK’s bookshop town. Living up to Wales’ reputation, Hay delivered spits … Continue reading / view photos Hay Bluff and Hay-on-Wye

Clee Hill, Shropshire

This was a fairly short walk on Sunday from The Welsh Marches, a pocket walking guide book. It was a walk of two halves. The first half required walking past industrial coal, ironstone and dhustone (black stone) quarries. The view improved on the pathless moorland route to a radio station. At other times of the … Continue reading / view photos Clee Hill, Shropshire

Cannock Chase and Stafford

Cannock Chase in Staffordshire is an area of outstanding beauty. The dense woods are a wonderful place to walk and relax. We did a short walk there in the limited time we had on Saturday before going to Stafford. I noticed how much more friendly people were in Cannock Chase than on the Gorring walk … Continue reading / view photos Cannock Chase and Stafford

Pigs in Notting Hill

This Sunday, in trying to avoid coronavirus-drenched crowds but still wanting to make the most of the British summer, we turned to Stephen Millar’s book, London’s Hidden Walks. We went to Notting Hill. It was an illuminating day. The origins of the name Notting Hill are uncertain. An early version, Knottynghull, was recorded in 1356. … Continue reading / view photos Pigs in Notting Hill

Cows and chips on the Thames

For a moment, I thought I was back in India, where cows are everywhere – from the high street to the beach. Curiously, I’d been on several Meetup walks in Gorring but none of them took in the Thames. We were following a walk in the OS Pathfinder series for the Home Countries, which I … Continue reading / view photos Cows and chips on the Thames

Bare chests and lively tops

As I hiked Runyon Canyon Park and the Hollywood Hills, I felt overdressed and under-muscled. I was wearing t-shirt and shorts. But this was too much. Many men were bare-chested with well-developed muscles. Some women wore low-cut, and lively, tops. The area is popular with people in the film industry and, if you’re eagle-eyed, you’ll … Continue reading / view photos Bare chests and lively tops

Angel Island

One of the day trips you can do from San Francisco is to Angel Island, a thirty minute boat ride that passes Alcatraz (the inescapable prison, now closed). Once there, I walked up Mount Livermore – a pleasant two hour circular climb, ascending about 240m. From the top, you get good views of the San … Continue reading / view photos Angel Island

Beautiful Yosemite

Yosemite is one of America’s best kept secrets. It is a beautiful national park – unspoilt and not commercialised. There are many hikes people can do – easy and hard. After our Half Dome marathon, we had a recovery day, seeing Yosemite’s many faces without much exertion. We were in a minibus. Anyone can drive … Continue reading / view photos Beautiful Yosemite

Hiking to Half Dome

One of the famous peaks in Yosemite is Half Dome. The name will be obvious when you see a photo of it. The hike to the top requires using cables. To avoid a traffic jam, any one hiking to the top requires a permit. The handing out of permits is a lottery: there is no … Continue reading / view photos Hiking to Half Dome