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" 1. Rhossili and Gower - Sunset View "
Date & start time: Saturday 30th Sept - Sunday 1st Oct 2017 ( Map ref SS 417 881).
Location of Start : Sunset View Cottage, Rhossili, Gower, South Wales, UK.
Stayed at : Sunset View Cottage (self-catering holiday home).
Places visited : Rhossili Bay and the village.
Walk details : A local walk for the dogs and ourselves, an hour or so down to the beach.
With : Ann and our dogs, Harry and Dylan.
Weather : Low cloud and occasional rain after a damp drive down from Cumbria.
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We're on holiday for a week and exchange "Britain's best views" for "Britain's 2nd best views" (according to a TV poll a few years back).
We travel south from the Lake District to the Gower Peninsular, located to the west of our old home town of Swansea.
Chance this week to spend more time with family and friends whom we saw only briefly at the wedding in the summer.
After a dull, fairly wet drive south we arrive at our destination.
The village of Rhossili is located at the end of the Gower Peninsular . . . drive any further west and you fall into the sea !
Our home for the week will be Sunset View Cottage, the one with the yellow walls,
just down from the village green and the Church of St Mary's.
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As planned this Saturday afternoon our son and daughter-in-law arrived for a visit
accompanied of course by their son, our grandson, Luke . . . now a full six months old.
A slightly surprised look as he meets Harry and Dylan at his own level.
In the last eight weeks he's become a lot sturdier and can now easily sit up on his own
but a warm back-rest is always appreciated.
Luke has been fed and changed for bed now, as Gareth and Rhian are staying for supper.
He retires to his travel cot in the other room as we prepare our meal.
. . . a fine Loweswater curry.
Most of the dishes had been cooked last week and brought down, ready made, in take-away trays.
The remainder were prepared in the well appointed kitchen of Sunset View Cottage.
Photo by Ann of course !
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Next day Ann and I take a stroll . . . down to the beach below the cottage.
Harry's not quite as mobile as Dylan but given the gentle track and with plenty of time he'll get there quite happily.
Beyond the end of the headland is Worms Head
Many names of Norse origin can be found in the Gower Peninsula, including this one.
" Wurm " was the Norse word for dragon . . . the Vikings believed that the island looked like a sleeping dragon or sea serpent.
A wide track takes us down to the fields behind the three mile long sandy beach.
Harry's ears are extended as a result of him running along the track . . . he's obviously keen to be out and about.
There's a strong breeze blowing today which forms impressive waves, that crash against the headland and sweep in across the beach.
Rhossili Bay of course is one of the famous Welsh surfing beaches.
The Old Rectory . . . as seen from the beach.
Despite the poor weather it is still nice to be down on the sand.
This is the view north to Burry Holms at the top end of the bay.
. . . and the view the other way to the southern end of the beach.
The tide is rising fast and the dark post of the Helvetia wreck is being surrounded by the waves.
Two lads are out surfing . . . fortified by wet-suits
. . . but the water is not actually that cold according to my toes !
The blowhole on the end of Worms Head is throwing a good plume of water into the air.
The head of the Worm is about 150 feet above the sea so that's a tall spout of water.
The waves are not best for surfing today . . . the best ones are formed by a large Atlantic swell
but the surfers are getting plenty of fun in choppy seas on this breezy day.
Photography obviously forms an enjoyable part of our walks . . . that's me on bended knee.
Harry is close at hand but Dylan seems to have gone walk-about to see someone on the far left hand side of the bay.
Ancient fallen rocks now embedded deep in the sand.
I love the power of the waves on stormy days like this.
Presumably it makes flying more interesting too .
Makes a nice place to sit but is a bit lumpy ! This apparently 'cemented' rock is a natural feature.
In the mix is the grey limestone, granite and other rocks that once coalesced on a raised beach, millennia back, when the sea levels were higher.
This type of rock can be found on many places on Gower but these have fallen onto the beach from the headland due to natural erosion.
A real Welsh Dragon.
Washed up on the shore . . . a moon jellyfish . . . a sting from their tentacles can be painful but not fatal.
Experts tell us that there has been a boom in breeding this year and the strong Atlantic hurricane winds are bringing them ashore in large numbers.
An article in the Daily Telegraph (other papers are available!) tells of many other sightings.
We leave the beach and head up the path to the village.
Above us the surfers are walking past what looks like a collection of colourful plastic.
Picture frames with a sea theme. Sadly the painted umbrellas (looking like jellyfish) had suffered from the winds and weather
just like the real one we saw earlier which had suffered from being washed ashore.
Flotsam re-cycled into artwork .
On the top of the cliff we got the classic view of Rhossili Bay . . . slightly diminished by the poor weather unfortunately.
The end of the road and the scenery is a mecca for visiting tourists.
Opposite the Rhossili Bay Hotel the National Trust have spent a lot of time, effort and money in upgrading the car park.
It is a much more practical alternative to the sand and bumpy gravel car park that was there before.
Gone is the kiosk and attendant in favour of an electronic pay and display parking system . . . Trust members park free.
Our route back to the cottage passes St Mary's Church so we enter the churchyard to look around.
During the early 13th century, this new church and the village was built upon the cliff top
to avoid the never ending threat of wind, sea and sand which affected the old church and settlement on the warren at the base of the cliffs.
The horizontal sundial dates to the late 18th - early 19th century and is made of slate and brass, set for latitude (51.5°) Rhossili.
Just a short walk and we're back at our accommodation after a fine local walk.
The weaher forecast for the rest of the week is better . . . maybe our next photos will have a little sunshine too.
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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 warm and comfortable holiday destination.
Previous walk - 28th September 2017 - Scout Scar in the South Lakes
A previous time in the area - 18th - 22nd April 2015 - Swansea Holiday 2015
Next walk - 2nd October 2017 - 2. Rhossili Coastguard Walk