Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Warleigh Weir

Today, I managed to tick three things off my summer 2014 to-do list!
A) A Wild Swim in a River
B) Discover somewhere amazing in Somerset
C) Climb up a waterfall

After hearing speak of a "secret" swimming spot just on the edge of Bath from friends at work, I did some research and found a few blogs about a little place called Warleigh weir, but details of finding it exactly were a little sketchy; it really seemed this place was elusive and secret! Naturally, me and one of my best friends Jeg's who is also from Cornwall and an adventurific explorer decided we were going to have to mark this on our map and set route on a sunny day to this magical sounding place.
Today was that day, and my gosh... was it a great day.

We knew the Weir was in Claverton somewhere, and followed the SatNav into the countryside on the busy Warminster road until we lost it completely (Dang modern technology) and relied on our bearings and nature navigation skills... (by nature navigation skills I mean pointing a stick in a direction and yelling "This way!")
We parked in a little parking lay by on the busy Warminster road because I read on a blog that there was no parking down Ferry Lane and that it was a dead end. We walked through some beautiful fields instead of the busy road which was great fun and found some delightful little secret gardens and dens along the canal built by the children who lived in the canal boats. It was like something from a romantic fairy tale, old tire swings swaying from ancient trees, and billy cans and home made toys littering the forest floor. The barges were moored up permanently on the side, and it just fueled my dreams of adopting that freefolk way of life.

We finally made it to Ferry lane (But later discovered it would have been much quicker and direct to have just used the road instead of fields although also much less adventurous) and it was a charming walk down to by where you enter the weir and despite a warning that there was no parking at all... there were in fact a few (but extremely limited spaces) where one could park.

The village that surrounds the weir is idyllic, a little mill, a few cottages and a canal boat community... there's even one barge where you can buy ice creams and drinks! we didn't this time because we had plans for burgers and milkshakes for tea, but we definitely would next time!

We were greeted by a Warleigh Weir sign and hopped over a jolly style into a great field that people use for sun bathing. The farmer who owns it is very kind and lets the public use it, but if you do ever come here, please be mindful to take home yours (and someone elses) litter! It's a magical place and it would be sad to be selfish and put an end to this kind fellow sharing his field and Weir with us all.

So the weir... well it surpassed my expectations! I don't think the pictures do it justice... its just magical! I can't remember having this much fun in so long! Playing in the water falls and climbing up them... jumping in up stream into the deep cooling waters and swimming about... walking along the weir and being showered by the spray of the falls. We had so much fun splashing about and exploring, the photo's just don't do the adventure justice! The place was made even more magical by the presence of hundreds of gorgeous royal blue dragon flies (I pretended they were fairies) and we found a secret abandoned weir but I wont tell you where! It's for you to find!

Today was a perfect adventure, after spending an entire day and evening at the weir, we got Burgers at GBK then found some locks and canals to explore until the sun set and Bath became littered with stars. I got to spend it with one of my best friend's from home, and I know today is a day that will stay with me for the rest of my life. England's' countryside still has those hidden gems... those pockets of nostalgia and magic from children s novels that offer great adventure, escape from the city and make you feel like you're in a time warp.
Warleigh weir is one of those places, I'll definitely be back. Thankyou Bath for being fairy tale and magical... Im learning to love this place :) It'll never be Cornwall, but it's magic and wonderful just the same.

Searching for the Weir, the adventure begins 

 The countryside surrounding was incredible, these pictures just don't quite capture its true awesomeness

Ferry Lane that leads to the Weir 

The Canal runs parallel to the river that has the Weir, here there is a little barge selling tuck goodies!

Over the level crossing! watch for trains

We found it! 

Its more amazing and wonderful in real life, I felt like I was in Sarah heaven. Rivers...waterfalls...dragonflies and barges :P

Of course a selfie happened... v.v

Spot the dragonflies! 

The water was pleasant, it was cool and fresh! Not too murky! Im used to salty sea water, but this was great :) I've swam in lakes before, but this was my first proper river!

Leaning over the weir 

Being a shark 

Sorry about the picture spamming, it was just such a lovely place, I feel that its space on my scrap book... the Salty Sea blog deserved a large corner :)

I can't wait to come back here... but it'll be autumn or next summer as I'm heading back home to Cornwall for my summer in two weeks time when I move house for the next Academic Year :) I bet this place is beautiful decorated with autumn leaves.
Until next time Warleigh Weir...


Sunday, 15 June 2014

Adventure List

I have no shame in admitting that I am an avid list fan. I make lists for everything, sometimes I invent lists that aren't real for situations that are completely imaginary just cause. My favourite list, is my "Things to do before I die list". People have been calling them bucket lists, but I've been having one of these running since I was about 12, I'm not even sure what a bucket list means... but because I realised I need to set myself a sort of discipline for remembering to put things on this space, I decided to share one of my main lists: "My infinite List of Adventure". I know its not infinite... it's made of paper and there's only about 20 or so things on there, but it's ever changing and ever growing. 
I have other seasonal lists, ie) Things to do this summer which generally includes skinny dipping, having picnics and watching shooting stars and I'll definitely share that one later, but I'm gonna kick this off with my adventure page. and I'm happy to say a few of those things are even crossed out ^_^ 
I'm also gonna put up a few pictures to recount the memories of those crossed off bits :)


Friday, 13 June 2014

Day Tripper

It's official. S U M M E R has arrived in England. 
2 weeks to go and things are getting exciting! I'm moving to a new (old) house closer to the town and I'm so incredibly excited because I finally get my dream of having an attic space :D I fully intend to create a spiffy den of cosyness  and have a better view of the moon at night so I can dream of being an astronaut.
After 2 years of constantly sneaking back to Cornwall and surprise train visits from my bestest friend and boyfriend George, we're going to be finally together at Uni because he's coming to Bath to study Primary school education! :) I think he's going to make a pretty fine primary teacher, and I can't wait to start swing dance classes with him!

So in order to kick off the summer and break the mundane routine from working to save for a new camera, me and two of my best good friends from back home in Cornwall escaped our Uni towns Bristol and Bath for the day and took the train over to Weymouth, Dorset and became temporarily those creatures we like to grumble about most during the summer in Cornwall: Emmetts (that means tourists to you English speaking folks). My granddad's actually from Weymouth so that's my claim to being as un-emmetlike as I possibly can and my gosh... it was a stinker of a hot day. Sun cream was forgotten, lessons were learnt... but best of all, memories were made with two fabulous people dear to my heart.

I would come here when I was really small with my dad to visit family who lived here. It's so bizare that you can exist in a place you once existed many years ago, yet it just doesn't feel like the same place at all. That place in your memory, is a queer alternate universe that's locked and inaccessible unless you have a time machine. There's no way back, just forward. and places don't really change, even if they appear to. It's you who changes because the land under your feet just stays the same. It's there... even if it feels swallowed by the sea. That thing swallowed by the sea is your youth and nostalgia, not the land. I pine for my past, but I love every minute of my present and am filled with trepidation for the future.

Time passing can not take everything away... especially rubber rings 

Its blue flavour 

I am the one on the right. yep. that's me. Hello! 

and these are my massively comfy Cath Kidston plimsols. 

Who's that girl? It's Jess! 

I love the colours of little homes by the sea, always so colourful and cheerful 

The heat got to much, so we found a lovely place to eat. It wasn't a quirky cute seaside cafe like we would normally seek out, it was a large popular pub on he harbourside called "Rendezvous" that offered pretty decent food at a student budget and equally affordable cocktails with quite a variety! We bagged a balcony seat and basked in the shade but had beautiful views of the boats in the harbour. 

The end of our day tripper adventure but beginning of our summer.
I'll try and keep up with our adventures on this little blog that I like to call my scrap book :)
It's a place for memories, thoughts, stories and pictures. 
Mostly its a shrine to my true love; the sea.

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