Wales Coastal Path: the bit round Cardiff

The days are short, the air warm, grey and damp: when would be a better time to walk a bit of coast east from Cardiff?  In a rare glimpse of sun, we left our van, called Tweetie on account of its happy squeaks, off a roundabout where Ocean Way meets Rover Way.  Everywhere was wet.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

There is a trick to appreciating urban walks.  The eye filters what you don’t want to see but the camera ruthlessly records.  A colourful bit of graffiti behind the trees, or the bright logo of the Western Mail offices over a bramble, are hard to see on a photo.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path          cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

I like the strong lines and inventiveness of urban life and industrial sites – pipes, uprights and naughty paths not on any map.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal pathIn fact, we were on the Coastal Path, one of the tricky bits where industry cuts people off from the coast and we have to take an inland route.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

The logos took us over to the right, nearly to a pavement end, but there was a sign down to a dying buddliea-lined path by another steel fence, some reflective blankets and, suddenly, the sea – or estuary to be accurate, for this is the Bristol Channel.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

When the tidal Cardiff mud flats were transformed by the barrage, affecting the many birds when the water became non-tidal and permanent, it was a guess what would happen environmentally.  The birds maybe adapted, and were part of the huge flock that took off from the beach below the path.  We met several rod-and-line anglers too.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

On one side was the regular whirr of machinary, on the other the soft lapping of the waves.  Inside the steel fence were more shapes and patterns.  I was being told to hurry up, the light was going, and what was I photographing anyway?

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

Sewage works came up next, flat and dull like the mud underfoot.  On the water side, there was gorse in bloom and views across to Wentloog and the Gwent wetlands.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

They are strange, these wetlands and tips between road, industry and water.  I am not sure which way this camera is pointing, smart and white above the scrubby bushes and more steel.  We wandered off the path and into a bike track, with a couple of trial bikes using it.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

The warm winter is confusing plants, like this bright green mix of mosses and emerging seedlings – totally out of season like the gorse.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

To get out of the track, we scrambled down and waited to cross the busy, noisy Rover Way, then walked by Pengam Green, where there were ponies wandering and grazing.  Rover Way is one of Cardiff’s Gypsy and Traveller residential sites  with about 20 pitches – there is a need for over 100 – and their horses and ponies were tethered on parts of the verges, moving over very politely to let us pass.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

Now the light was almost gone, it was past four, and we headed for the lights of a supermarket, thankful to also find a bus stop and a Sunday bus due in five minutes.  It went through Tremorfa and saved us from walking Rover Way in the dark.  We had completed more of the coast from Ocean Way to the Rhymney River.

cardiff: rovers way part of coastal path

 

 

This entry was posted in coastal walks, open spaces: rights of way & highways, open spaces: urban spaces, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Wales Coastal Path: the bit round Cardiff

  1. “The eye filters what you don’t want to see but the camera ruthlessly records.”

    I love that and I’m glad to see you were able to enjoy the walk in spite of the weather, etc. 🙂

    Like

  2. Evocative piece, thank you Jay

    Like

  3. Anonymous says:

    Great mixture of images and commentary Jay. Happy Christmas. See you for a walk soon.
    Fee, Pete and Mollie.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Dave says:

    Thank you Ossjay, for your 2015 missive’s, looking forward to 2016 already. Compliments of the season to you, your organisation and family

    Dave (We saved Morfa)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Very informative .I like the fact you used industry mixed with nature. That is the only part of the Wales coastal path I have never not walked. Your blog has inspired me to walk it.

    Like

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