Sunday, 22 April 2012

7 trigs, 1 FBM and a surface block

Have just enjoyed a glorious weekend in North Devon bagging trigs. Once again was armed with notes on access - the site is such a mine of information, 1;25 000 map (waterproof thank goodness) and all the car parking spots were in the satnav.

Trig 1 was easy.  A 800 walk in from the road to the west.  Very grateful that we hadn't had a wet winter as it was pretty boggy.
12 04 21 TP5166 North Molton Ridge Trig
Trig 2 was a clamber over a couple of barbed wire fences and a mound/ditch affair but views were terrific.
12 04 21 TP6837 Western Common Trig
Trig 3 was fun. It sits the corner of a raised bank which, again, required some fence and ditch hopping. What I really liked about this one was the fact that the farmer has tied his/her barbed wire using the trig as an anchor. And, no, I wasn't tempted to walk across the log to the right of the pillar post trig bag.
12 04 21 TP5964 Shoulsbarrow Common Trig
Onto to trig 4, Shilstone Hill. A positively easy bag helped by the fact that there is a bridleway linking the trig and the carpark. Got my first glimpse of the Bristol Channel from this one and stupidly excited at spotting a tanker. If you peer carefully at the grey sea behind the trig you may spot it.
12 04 21 Shilstone Hill Trig
The wind was picking up by Trig 5 so I got blown up (or was it down?) to this one. The field looked freshly ploughed when I pitched up. Indeed, very fresh. So much so that the farmer was still in it. He'd just ploughed around the trig so I waved at him and pointed to it. He seemed quite happy for this looney woman to go visit something he'd far rather put to one side of his field.
12 04 21 TP4246 Kipscombe Hill Trig
The next treat was a drive by FBM. I don't think I've ever bagged a Fundamental Bench Mark. It is in the entrance to a National Trust car park and is dead cute. It has its very own stone wall surrounding it. If I ever return I'm half minded to plant some daffs and primroses and to leave a gnome. I think that would complete the look very nicely.
12 04 21 Countisbury FBM
I didn't understand why the actual height above MSL wasn't marked on it. Unless it was kept hidden so the Ordnance Survey could sell it to you.
12 04 21 Countisbury FBM
Walked up to Trig 6, Butter Hill, and had stunning views across to Wales and the coast towards Lynmouth.
12 04 21 TP1821 Butter Hill Trig
What you can't see in the photo is that I'm finding it hard to stand upright. The wind was vicious!

Wandered around Lynmouth for the latter part of the afternoon. Look what I found?
12 04 21 EA Benchmark in Lynmouth
Today headed off up Hollerday Hill to hunt a surface block. Very easy to find as it was smack bang on the highest point. Hope you like the slant on this photo. It was so windy I'm surprised I got the horizon that level!
12 04 22 TP7308 Hollerday Hill Surface Block
My very first surface block.
12 04 22 TP7308 Hollerday Hill Surface Block
Wandered to the Valley of the Rocks in the wind and drizzle (lovely stuff) for a reviving coffee before my final bag Castle Field. I didn't find the local signage terribly helpful.
12 04 22 Lynton sign
A stiff climb up to the last one of the day and major relief on my part that the inquisitive bullocks that had lived in the field were elsewhere.
12 04 22 TP2025 Castle Field Trig
Not bad for a weekend although perhaps I should throw in a buried block next time?

The reason I get these weekends out is that Rog and the girls are on Dartmoor training for Ten Tors. He obviously had a conversation at some stage with another teacher about what I was up to this weekend. To quote Roger - "I tried to explain trig bagging to them, Ruth, but no matter how I said it, I couldn't make it sound even remotely interesting."

Friday, 20 April 2012

On Top of the World

I like doing jigsaws. They provide a mental challenge but also a way of unwinding from all the other 'stuff' which flies around my head. My parents recently passed onto me a 1000 piece satellite imagery jigsaw of the world. Awesome. The land/ice areas looked fun but the oceans looked impossibly interesting. It's taken me over a week to complete this and annoyingly (to me at least) I couldn't do it on a board as they were all too small by 5cm. I therefore had to build it on the dining room table. So we've been eating supper on top of the world literally. It's also had the added excitement, if you can call it that, of me thinking I've discovered new island when it's actually a piece of crumb stuck to a piece. Rog delivered me a mug of coffee last night, plonked it in the Pacific and, because the base of the mug was wet, created an instant archipelago.
12 04 20 The World
Off to trig hunt tomorrow. Weather not looking tip top so I wonder how long I'll last before I scurry away to my warm B&B and read a book!

Monday, 9 April 2012

I Can't Keep Away

When I bagged my last trig Ken pointed out that there was another easy find just a few kms east up the A303.  So on my way to Basingstoke on Thurs we made a slight detour.  I'd given the game away a couple of hours earlier as my husband had seen the trig print out lying around.  "Ahem," he said, "something you want to tell me?"  He's quite gracious as far as trig bagging goes. I think he can manage one a month.
12 04 06 TP0742 - Beacon Hill
The other geo excitement, if you can call it that, for the week was travelling to work by train on Thurs in the entertainment carriage. I realised that it was free to check the moving map - it would blank out after a minute and you could just switch it back on. Small pleasures eh?
12 04 05 Moving map on train

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Beijing Beauties

I'm just back from an RICS trip to Beijing - Governing Council and 'Fit for the Future' conference. I travelled up to LHR with a surveying colleague and was waylaid, very briefly, by Yarnbury Castle and a little something we found...
12 03 24 TP7095 - Yarnbury Castle
Yarnbury Castle TP7095 - a quick bag off the A303 if anyone is interested. Best approached from the lane to the east in a 4x4.  As you can see it was pretty windy up there which was a warm up for the Beijing blasts we faced later that week.

Governing Council was fine.  On the Tuesday afternoon we had some site visits so a group of us visited the Bird's Nest.  What an iconic building.  We had a tour guide but unfortunately she hadn't been sufficiently briefed on who we were so we had the standard tour.  What most of us were really keen to know was how the building was designed, built, maintained etc.
12 03 27 Beijing - Birds Nest
There were signs around depicting some of this information but surprisingly, considering this is now a tourist attraction, all the signs were in Chinese only. A missed opportunity me thinks.
12 03 27 Beijing - Birds Nest
Conference was Wed and Thurs morning. Lovely to meet up with so many geomatics colleagues.
12 03 28 RICS Conferences - Geomatics Unite
On Thursday afternoon, Gethin Roberts, Ken Hall and myself headed off for our geomatics treat - a trip to Beijing's Old Observatory. It was built in 1442 and is one of the oldest observatories in the world.
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory
Most of the 'relics' there have been moved to the Purple Mountain Observatory but there are some originals (just a bit hard to spot).  Anyway, I'm always very at home amongst sundails, sextants, orbs, armillaries etc.
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory - Gnomon
The Chinese were awesome astronomers, mathematicians etc working out the length of the day to over 5 decimal places of a day with great accuracy whilst us Europeans were wandering around in the Dark Ages.
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory
Plenty to see (and more photos here).
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory 12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory - Replica Armillary
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory - Quadrant 12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory - Theodolite
How's this for an awesome skyline?
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory - Fab Roof Line
And, yes, it was windy!
12 03 29 Beijing Old Observatory Windy Ruth