Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Dorset Day 2 - Peveril point & Lullworth Cove

The forecast for early morning had not been great, unlike the day before, which had promised some dawn sunshine, and which had spectacularly failed to deliver. So I wasn’t holding out a great deal of hope for a decent start to the day.

With that in mind I hadn’t planned to go far, just down to Peveril Point again, in case something did happen. And happen it did, it turned out to be a real beauty of a morning, with the sun appearing from behind a bank of cloud, and casting its warm radiance over the ocean before me, and Swanage seafront to my rear.

The weather was on my side.

It was pretty windy though, and the tide which was quite far in, was decidedly choppy. As I was stood on a small promontory, with waves either side of me, it didn’t take long for my lower half to become rather nautical, thanks to some particularly determined surges.

But the views from this outlook were superb, so I didn’t mind in the least, and I was happy to be snapping away while the morning light was so accommodating.

It was pretty windy and the sea was quite lively.

Using a long exposure I flattened out the sea and got some movement
in the clouds.

The warm sunlight lit up the rocks nicely.

Swanage was looking great in the morning light. 

As the sun rose, the light took on a yellow turn, before fully getting into its stride.

Once the sunlight had lost its early warmth, and risen further into the sky, I headed back to the apartment to check out and get going. I was driving over to Lulworth cove, one of the most popular places on the Dorset coast, and I wanted to get there nice and early before it got too busy.

The cove, which was formed around the last ice age, thanks to the sea and a nearby river joining forces to punch a hole in the Portland Stone coastline, which in turn allowed waves access to wear down the softer limestones behind, have conspired to create a perfect horeshoe bay. It is considered a wonder of Southern England, and one of the finest examples of its kind in the world.

I arrived about 9.30, and it was already starting to get pretty hectic. I took a stroll up onto the headland, hoping to get a useful view over the little bay below. Unfortunately a lot of it was fenced off, due to erosion of the cliff edges, and had been for some time by the look of it, so I couldn’t get as far along as I had hoped.

Looking down onto the cove.

So I clambered back down and walked the sandy perimeter of the cove, so I could look back towards the tiny harbour that nestles in the belly of the bay, from the rock strewn coastline that signals the start of the ocean proper.

The sun was starting to heat up as I wandered across the sand, so the shade afforded by the cliffs at the cusp of the bay was a welcome relief. I took a few shots looking across the cove, but the cloudless sky was now a gleaming blue, and not the most interesting of backdrops.

A view across the cove from its furthest shore.

I lazed around for a while on a large lumpy boulder, which was surprisingly comfortable, making the most of the quiet surroundings at that end of the cove, before gathering up my stuff heading back to the car. By the time I returned to the small street that runs from the bay to the carpark, the place was absolutely teeming with people.

I was happy to be leaving as I pulled out the large car park, which was already getting very full, and drove inland to Kingston Lacy. After about a 45 minute drive, I stopped at Bradbury Rings, an Iron Age hill fort, to have a spot of lunch, and then parked up on the side of the B3082, to try and get a few shots of the magnificent Beech Trees that line a mile long stretch of this small, but very busy road.

Unfortunately I hadn’t planned it very well, and the light filtering through the branches was very harsh, making the contrast a real pain to deal with, and basically rendering any good shots unattainable.

So I did what I usually end up doing when I go to Kingston Lacy; getting shots of the traffic as it speeds past me, and sort of forgetting about the trees. And after half an hour of, what was basically play time, I packed up and made for north. It was time to head home.

The busy road that runs beneath the trees.

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