Yesterday we decided to drive up the valley and see what "they" were doing to widen the road where the bank was threatening to subside ever sine we've been here. Over the past couple of weeks along our narrow single-track-with-passing-places lanes we have been passing (with difficulty!) lorry after huge lorry loaded with soil and shale from the hillside they have been digging away. Rather than use it, on top of strategically-placed cages of boulders to shore up the weak side of the road, they have been taking it miles and miles away - presumably as landfill . . . but there, Councils always know what they are doing, don't they?
The swell of Dan-y-Banc against the autumn clouds . . .
We parked a few hundred yards short of where the road was completely cut off to traffic - the gigantic digger parked the width of the road gave us a slight hint!
We finally worked out that the new road level would be along by those tree stumps . . . Hope they widen it a bit, or it will be a very interesting drive on a dark night . . . especially if you meet someone coming the other way!
They will have to put in the final piece of trackway up to the gate too, so the local farmer can bring his cattle back and forth from the hill grazing, and as it is also a trackway to the very top of the hill, so walkers can use it again too. I have only walked DOWN from the top of the hill - it is one heck of a climb UP it!
They will apparently be here for about another 14 weeks yet . . . according to a noticed pinned at the roadside.
The steepness of the wooded valley a couple of hundred yards before the photo of the digger shows you that they had their work cut out with the excavations.
I have always loved this hill as its bracken slopes remind me of Dartmoor, and I used to get very "homesick" whenever I drove past it in our first years here.
The sun was sinking in the sky, and gave a wonderful diffused light to the hillside.
An old abandoned barn, its back finally broken by years of weathering, sinking to its knees at the edge of the woodland.
I walked out onto what used to be the "hanging bridge" but is now like a cage across the river. I looked up and downstream, hoping against hope (I had been quiet) that I might see an otter, as they have been seen here, but the river was quiet - not even a Dipper to be seen.
Fungi of a Latin name adorning a rotten log.
Finally, two photos of our Inglenook and Hergom stove, to satisfy MM's curiosity to what the Hergom might look like! All sorts of doo-dahs hung up there - a pair of hames, old wooden spoons, several old horse bits, an old crane from a fireplace like this, and just above it (far right) a little "griddle" which came from an old Essex estuary sailing barge and which was put over the top of the stove for the kettle to sit in. Of course, at one side, my big old cauldron. You always thought I was a witch didn't you?!!!