Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Walk around the lake

The peace and quiet Plas Baladeulyn offers is quite soporific. Last night I was in bed and asleep by eleven, and despite waking several times briefly in the night, it was ten to nine when I finally woke up and realised the time. We had to rush downstairs for breakfast. We weren't quite the last. Another guest missed altogether.

Rain threatened to neutralise any excursion plans we might have, so we decided instead to walk around the lake at the bottom of the garden. As it is surrounded by marshy ground on three sides, there's not much of a lakeside path. We had to walk up the hill a mile and a half, and cross the valley where it narrows and take the return journey down the far side of the lake down the track to farm with a campsite in one sheltered field and half a dozen large open fields with thousands of sheep grazing in them. 

In the marshy area around the lake, reed and coarse grass was covered with what looked like white flowers from a distance, but on closer inspection, proved not to be flowers but small balls of a fine fluffy material, most probably flax growing wild. There were even patches of it floating in open water beyond the reed beds. It's something I've never seen or noticed in the wild before. We heard the cuckoo again at closer quarters saw a heron fly across the lake, a pied wagtail, a few mallard and Canada geese, but there seemed to be more gulls visible than any other species, riding the thermals where the valley narrows, and roosting in one small patch of shingle on the foreshore. 

Our leisurely little round trip took us two hours, and then it was lunchtime, so we went and bought food for a picnic in the Co-op at Penygroes. But the time we got back, the rain had started, so we ate in our room and then siesta'd. There was no good reason to venture out again, except to take even more photographs to add to the ones taken with my Sony Alpha 55 DSLR during the walk. Reviewing pictures taken, I found there were some using the telephoto lens which didn't meet my expectation, and I took my other Sony (HX50) to shoot the same subject for comparison purposes. The same cloud cover, albeit later in the day, yet the super zoom picture quality was better at several points - same aperture small difference in speed. It may be a question of telephoto lens quality. I'm no expert in understanding criteria for assessing let alone discussing the fine detail of photo quality, but I recognise the dissatisfaction.

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