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" Swansea 5 - Mewslade and a Picnic "
Date & start time: Sunday 9th April 2017, 12.30 pm start.
Location : Pitton Farm car park, Gower, Swansea, Uk ( SS 427 876 )
Places visited : Pitton Farm, Mewslade Valley, the beach and a cliff walk to Slade.
Walk details : 2.5 miles, 250 ft of ascent, 2 hours 15 mins including lunch.
Highest point : The top of Needle Rock overlooking Mewslade, 200ft above sea level.
Walked with : Ten of us and four dogs (details below).
Weather : Overcast . . . slightly cool as a result.
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There was a larger group of folk on our Gower walk today.
Not only were Sandra and Jackie included, but Jackie's sister and family who live locally were also invited to join us.
Our daughter Jenna, who was staying with her friends in North Gower, came along too
so there were three fewer vacant car spaces in the field of Pitton Farm car park by the time we all met up.
That's Jen and then Alexander and Rufus the dog and Peter and . . . . no that's Jackie and . . .
" Stands Still Everybody " . . . any chance a group photo ?
It took the owner of Pitton Farm who runs car park to bring the crowd to order . . . and kindly capture the moment for me on my camera.
In the photo . . . myself, Jen, Jenna, Ann, Cathy behind, Jackie, Sandra, Alexander, Peter and Joseph (Jen's son and grandson).
The doggy front row is filled by Dylan, Harry, Toby and Rufus.
As we walk through the farm and down the valley we're once again back into the land of wild garlic.
In there are primroses and bluebells too, even the odd dandelion.
A close up of the wild garlic flowers . . . just smell the blossom . . . and I thought I would include the second photo.
It is of the demarcation line between grazed farm field to the left and protected woodland to the right . . . a real green / brown boundary.
Out of the woodland and down the track towards the beach.
This is limestone country and there's a great slab of it in what could be an old quarry to the right of the path.
There's a small cave in the base which Ann has crawled through in her teaching days . . .
Well "Miss" had to go through first before her school kids would follow !
Alexander sits in the exit of the tunnel.
Ann certainly wouldn't go through a second time so Alexander could use that as an excuse not to try it.
The National Trust, which own a lot of the coastal land of Gower, have been busy rebuilding the old stone wall.
Whoever their wall expert is, he's doing a good job.
Mewslade is the last but one bay before the south-westerly end of Gower.
It has developed on a fault line, and the sea has etched out a narrow, almost gorge-like approach to the beach.
The power of the sea can be imagined by the shape of the boulder almost jammed in the head of the gully.
It has obviously rolled here from somewhere but the battering it has taken over the millennia has rounded off all its corners.
Safely down . . . and onto the sand.
Eight folk on the beach . . . some of the group missing . . . two Loweswatercam photographers seem to be out of shot.
The mighty Thurba Head . . . two hundred foot of limestone headland overlooking Mewslade.
Chance for the dogs to have a run around . . . once they have had their picture taken.
A wider panorama showing some of the dramatic coastal cliffs that surround the sands.
The tide has turned and the dry sandy crossing to Fall Bay below the next headland has already been closed off by the sea.
When I first saw them they were scaling the lower, pink section of the cliff,
but I was distracted by something and managed only one belated photo.
International cuisine . . . free-range eggs from Loweswater, bread from Swansea Market
and cheese from . . . well . . . all over the place.
Time passes . . . the waves roll in and out . . . mainly in.
The cliffs under Thurba Head are now washed by the tide . . . time to head back up the beach.
I read it as J's bidet . . . but Alexander was just advertising the fact
that his Aunty Jenna, our daughter, has her birthday today and that we are out for a family meal this evening.
At this point Jen, Peter and Joe preferred to head back to the car, so Jackie and Sandra headed back up the valley with them.
We decided to extend the walk slightly by taking the cliff path west and walking over to see the view of Fall Bay from the cliff top.
Another excited family makes its way down towards the sands, taking a more rocky descent route than we did.
Our path gradually climbs the headland and includes this exposed path around that first 'cliff with the caves' far below.
A family group has stopped for a spot of lunch on the rocks below. The youngsters seemed to have made a few drawings in the sand.
Hold your cursor over the picture to see what they created. Turn your screen upside down if the rollover doesn't work !
( answer at the bottom of the page )
Alexander and I climb out onto the Needle Rock.
The views down were superb . . . despite the overcast conditions.
Safely back on the broad grassland of the cliff top after the comparative narrowness of the Needle.
The broad expand of Fall Bay. . . one of the more remote of the Gower Beaches.
A fast inflatable rib enters the bay . . . on a sightseeing tour from further down the peninsular.
They check out the bay from the sea . . . and then are away exploring once again.
On our way back now . . . the impressive Needle Rock once again.
It was the subject of a lot more photos that I have chosen to shown here !
Alexander leads the way along a short section of the coast path up here on the high ground.
Paragliders ply their sport in the updrafts above Middleton and the west facing slopes of Rhossili Downs.
Our path dips back to the signpost and and the path in the valley.
Back on the valley track where the Trust were building the wall earlier.
No, the sign is not 'photo shopped' . . . it really was that big and totally out of context with the nature of the work being undertaken.
Just the last few hundred yards back through the woodland and we were back at the car . . . now who fancies an ice cream ?
- - - o o o - - -
Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's new Panasonic Lumix Tz60 Compact, or my Panasonic Gx8 Compact System Camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . a starfish and a mermaid man in the sands.
Previous walk - 8th April 2017 - Swansea 4 - Oxwich Bay
A previous time in the area - 28th Sept 2007 A visit to Swansea and Gower
Next walk - 9th April 2017 - Swansea 6 - Langland and home