What a bore

Today’s guest picture was sent to me by our friend Gavin.  Last week when we were enjoying wet and grey conditions here, he was over on the east coast basking in the sun on Tynemouth beach, a mere 80 miles away.   But it was chilly there too in the brisk wind in spite of the sun.

tynemouth beach

We enjoyed a pleasant day of warm spring weather here today.  The shock was so great that I nearly had to go back to bed for a lie down to recover.  In the end though, I pulled myself together, turned down an offer of treacle scones, nodded at the goldfinches on the feeder…


…and set off for a pedal.  I didn’t rush out as it was only 5°C after breakfast and I didn’t want to have to put on a lot of cold weather gear only to have to take it off again as the day warmed up.  I compromised and waited until it hit 8° and only had to shed a few garments as I went round.  (I have a handy pannier to store them in.)

As I was hoping for a longer ride than usual, I stopped from time to time to have a drink and a snack and make sure that my legs got a rest.

I enjoyed this bank of snowdrops near Gair at my first stop.

snopwdrops at gair

I didn’t enjoy having to take my front wheel off and clear a lot of mud from my front mudguard which I had picked up when I cycled past the new windfarm  site entrance on the top of Callister.  The potholes there have been mended but the mud is a continuing problem for cyclists.

The wind was not strong but it was in my face for most of the outward journey so I made slow progress down to the village of Rockcliffe, which sits on the bank of the River Eden.

I parked my bike just before I got to the village and walked down a short track to the riverside and enjoyed the peaceful scene.

rockcliffe and eden

I had just turned away from the river when a loud noise made me look back.

I was amazed to see a tidal bore rolling up the river towards me and struggled to get my phone out to record the scene as my camera was having one of those Lumix moments when the zoom won’t extend.

I have seen bores on the news before but I have never seen one in real life so this was a treat. It was surprisingly loud and although it was only about a foot high, it looked very powerful as it swept past me…


…with the front of the bore not being a straight line as I expected but an elegant curve.


My camera started working again at this point and I used it to record the contrast between the calm water ahead of the wave and the turbulent movement behind it.

bore on eden 3

Three canoeists were paddling along behind the bore.  Whether they had been riding it earlier and had got left behind, I don’t know.

canoeists follwoing bore

I reclaimed my bike and went on my way very cheerfully, having seen a sight that I had never expected to see.

As I got back on the road, I enjoyed a black and white view of horses.

rockcliffe horses

The direct route that I wanted to take from Rockcliffe was closed for resurfacing so I had to go round by the cycle lane along the new northern by-pass.  This led me past a newly constructed pond and I was pleased to see that what could just have been a utilitarian run off pool had been carefully sculpted and planted with reeds.

pond near asda

I turned for home and crossed the A7 at Blackdyke, and on my way, I passed this, the first dandelion of spring.

first dandelion of spring

From there I headed onto the Brampton Road, joining it opposite this  fine row of trees..

three trees brampton road

…and then I stopped for a sit on a bench below the Longtown bridge for a final snack and drink.


I was hoping for some waterside bird life but there was none, so I took a shot through one of the arches…

longtown brodge arch

…and, with the wind now behind me,  I cycled home up the hill a good deal faster than I had come down.

The day was so well adjusted for cycling that I might well have gone further but my legs, which are a bit out of practice, objected so I settled for 53 miles at a modest pace and was very pleased to have had the opportunity to do that.

I said a day or two ago that the flowers in the garden were just waiting for a bit of sun to come out.  They got a bit of sun  today and they came out.

clump of blue crocus

single crocus

creamy crocus
I was interested to see a lot of insects about.

pale crocus


yellow crocus

Mrs Tootlepedal reported that she had seen a bee early in the afternoon but it had left before I arrived.  We are going to refer to it as Bee A as it is the first that we have seen this year.

She did some gardening while I checked on the frogs….

two frogs in pond
They were not seeing eye to eye today

…and then I went in to make a cup of tea and watch the birds.  There were not many about.

chaffinch head down

A second helping of Mrs Tootlepedal’s fish pie round off a good day very well.  We had some marrow on the side.  We have had a big marrow on the go for several weeks and it has provided many side dishes for meals and shows no sign of going over at all.  It is the only one of our own vegetables left as the fish pie had used the last of our home grown potatoes. Still, we have been eating our own potatoes since August so we can’t complain. They kept very well thanks to the good summer.

Birds were very few and far between when I was watching today but I did find a flying chaffinch of the day.

flying chaffinch

Those interested can click on the map below for more details of the ride.
Garmin route 22 Feb 19

A final note: the traction on my back seems to have helped my foot problem a lot and it is much less painful than it has been.  I hope that this progress continues.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

31 thoughts on “What a bore

  1. It’s amazing when you see something in nature that you can be fairly sure you’ll never see again. I think we have a river with bores that happen regularly somewhere here in the U.S. but I can’t remember where.
    As always it’s great to see the flowers, especially the dandelion.
    That’s very interesting about the traction on your back helping your foot. I doubt I ever would have thought of that.

    1. I did think that it was back related possibly but I didn’t expect the traction to do any good so it has been a pleasant surprise. Now I shall have to try not to make it worse again.

  2. I had not heard of a tide bore before. Those are impressive photos. I grew up near the Mystic River in Connecticut, but do not see the phenomenon listed for that river system, which empties out into Long Island Sound.

  3. how wonderful to see that spring is in the air in your part of the world. wonderful photos. and thanks for providing context with maps. glad your foot is feeling better. I’d never heard of a tidal bore – quite interesting.

  4. Excellent pictures of that surprising bore and also of the splendid colour on your garden. Glad your physical ailments are somewhat restored and thanks for that row of trees.

  5. Congratulations on making the most of a lovely day and enjoying a long ride. The tidal bore looked exciting. Lovely view through the bridge.

  6. Glad your foot is feeling better. I have never heard of a bore, much less seen one. Goodness, me! I went to Wikipedia and read all about it. Many thanks for yet another enlightening post.

  7. Such a lovely sunny day with lots of great photos and surprises. Lucky timing to be at the right place for seeing the bore and taking such a good photo of it….the frogs looked pleased too. Pity the good fortune didn’t carry through to todays match! I’m just thrilled at our result!

    1. So you should be…even though England looked a bit clueless, the Welsh played very well. We played our usual game of great stuff and rubbish mixed together but I thought that ours was a more interesting game to watch.

  8. I’m glad you’re on the mend. The tidal bore looks quite like an ocean wave, only with ambitions more in the area of stamina and less in the field of drama. Thanks for the photos–and such darling frogs! I am glad to see them happy and well.

  9. So happy to hear of the improvement to your foot. Also the pleasant pedaling with the wind at your back to speed you on your way home.

  10. Good news on the foot front.

    I have been interested in tidal bores ever since running across one in a book. I have found and watched several videos of them. Very cool that you got to see it in person.

    Oh, how very well do I know LUMIX moments.

  11. Great shots of the tidal bore, Tom! And the flowers are a welcome sight. No sign of anything growing here yet, but maybe that’s just as well since there is more snow and cold temps in the forecast.

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