Head in the clouds

Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. It shows that while we may have sunrises in Langholm, he can match them with sunsets in Derby.

If the sun did indeed rise over Langholm this morning, we didn’t see it. We were covered in mist.

After breakfast, I decided to drive up to the White Yett to see if it was a day for getting above the mist and looking down on it. Mrs Tootlepedal stuck to her drive project and waved me goodbye as I drove out over her newly laid slabs.

There were fairly promising signs as I drove up the hill….

…and when I looked along it, the Ewes valley was full.

Sadly, this was a false dawn, and as I parked the car and walked up the track to the monument, it became plain that there was more mist above me than below me. Although the Ewes valley gave me this opportunity to see the power lines plunging into obscurity….

…looking down over the Esk, the town of Langholm was basking in sunshine….

…and I was walking up into thick mist…

…and looking down through thin mist.

Still, it was good to be up in the air on such a still morning, and the sun did its best to break through. I walked past the monument until I could just see the police aerial ahead of me…

…and then turned back, with the sun behind me in the hope of seeing a mistbow over the monument. Sadly the sun was too weak and the mist was too thick and I could hardly see the monument, let alone a mistbow.

It was annoying because I could see the blue sky above the mist and it was nearly a perfect day for sparkling misty shots. Since it was quite chilly at about 3°C, I didn’t stay too long in hope but made my way back down the track to the car.

The Ewes valley was pretty well clear by the time that I got there.

I walked up to the col to look over into the Tarras valley…

…and I met a keen runner out for his morning exercise who told me that there was a flock of the wild goats feeding a bit further down the road.

I went back for the car and drove down to investigate. He was quite right.

The goats were quite happy to let me walk up the road taking photographs of them…

…though many of them were too busy eating to pose for me.

They are quite impressive animals.

There must have been at least twenty goats spread across the moor and as I walked back down the road to the car, a noise behind me made me turn round. There was one last goat crossing the road to join them.

I had expected to find a coffee morning in progress in the garden when I got home, but Mrs Tootlepedal and Margaret had agreed that 4°C was just too cold for fun, even for such hardy souls as themselves. I joined Mrs Tootlepedal for coffee indoors.

After coffee, and with the temperature now at 5° to 6°C, I put on a lot of warm clothes and went for a bicycle ride. The days are so short now that unless you start early, there is not enough time for a long leisurely photographic outing so I pressed on to keep myself warm, and only stopped for a couple of token pictures on the way,

The winter gorse is always a cheerful sight beside the Gair road…

….but this view of a bare tree at Chapelknowe more correctly reflected the time of year.

Cold hands and feet are the winter cyclist’s bugbear and I am happy to report that my new socks and old gloves kept both sets of extremities very snug so I thoroughly enjoyed my ride, especially as what light wind there was, blew me home.

Two flowers caught my eye in the garden when I got back…

…but I was too late to see any birds at the feeder and a preening jackdaw in the walnut tree was the only bird in the garden.

After a cup of tea and a shower, I printed out some moorland pictures for Mrs Tootlepedal. My printer was in a recalcitrant mood so this took some time, and no sooner had I finished than it was time for a very cheerful sibling Zoom.

I cooked trout for our tea and that rounded the day off very nicely.

No flying birds today, but a group of birds in a neighbour’s tree, who to be fair must have flown to get up that high, take the flying bird’s place instead.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “Head in the clouds

  1. I loved the shots of the mist. Very dramatic.
    I’ve never spent much time with goats but since I was a young boy I’ve heard how they will butt you with their horns, so it’s always a revelation to find that they’re so placid.
    Lillian Austin is looking a little bedraggled, probably from the cold, but still very beautiful.

  2. I know you get too much of it to find it enjoyable, but it’s rare enough here that I quite enjoy going for a walk in the fog/mist. Very fearsome horns – if they continue to grow throughout the goat’s life, they must be a trial to carry around.

  3. I enjoyed all the photos, mists included! Those goats have some impressive horns, and I would not like to be on the receiving end of a head butt from one of them.

    The gorse, nasturtium and rose were bright spots. They are hardy souls.

  4. Quite nippy up there yesterday, really extremely nippy down here today, very heavy frost and clear blue skies this morning. Makes me want to go back to bed. Those goats I presume are the same breed that are found in Snowdonia? During the lockdown earlier this year they came down from the mountain into the towns, because there was no traffic etc People were waking up to find them in their gardens eating the flowers and hedges. There’s never a mistbow when you want one, I’d never heard of them until you started mentioning them. Better luck next time, because I’m sure there will be a lot more mists to explore as this year comes to a close. I should look it up, but can I ask you? Do I have to apply for a drivers license once more after ten years? Is it from 80 years of age one has to apply every three years? Have a great day, cheers.

    1. I think that it is from 70 years. Certainly my last license only ran for three years. Check on your license. It tells you when it expires.

      I think the the goats are just common or garden goats that have survived in the wild after being abandoned by their owners years and years ago.

  5. Roamin’ in the gloamin’ …can’t remember the rest….but those wonderful mist photos just made me think of that song! The ‘wild’ ponies that wander over the hills here are actually owned- is it the same for those handsome goats?

    1. …by the bonnie banks of Clyde, roamin in the gloamin with my lassie by my side…or something like that.

      I can see why you thought of it.

      The goats really are wild though they are probably descendants of domestic goats let loose when people moved off the land.

  6. Excellent clouds and mist. Glad the goats were so cooperative, they are a forceful presence especially with those horns. Does gorse ever stop blooming?

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