Thursday, 18 March 2010

Wild Wild Wales Part Dos: "Explorers on a Mission"

Hey Friends and Family!

Here I am, sitting in my kitchen sipping on some chai tea and typing the next installment to the Wild Wild Wales series. I'm also hangover as hell. The English really love their St. Patrick's day. Or maybe its just me that loves it. I was the only one at the pub with a green and white dress, green knee high socks, green necklace, and green sparkly eye shadow. What can I say? I love to celebrate!

Anyway, St. Patrick's day is not what I am writing about tonight. Tonight I'm writing about our amazing hike in Pembrokeshire National Park. I didn't realize until we were leaving that the Hostel was in a National Park which I think is pretty darn cool!
So, we started our hike at the front door of our hostel and walked up the path you can barely see to the right of the stone wall in the distance. It wound between these really cool leafless trees at the very base of the hill. I really liked these trees for some reason. I asked Phil to turn around and got this great shot of him:

We continued on the path and it opened up right at the base of the hill. It appeared that the path was winding around the hill and would take a gradual rise up the side of it. While we were walking, Phil noticed that there were several little paths that led away from the main one and straight up to the top. Or so we thought. Phil was very tempted to try one and asked me what I thought. I told him that if he did I would follow.

We took off along the next one we came to and by little path, I mean this thing was about three inches wide with ankle high sticker bushes on either side. Once we get about ten feet in, we realize that these are sheep paths. We had passed a flock grazing at the bottom of the hill just after the trees. I took this shot of them before leaving the main path. Notice the ocean in the top left hand corner. The land past it is an island. So beautiful!

I'm guessing these paths were theirs and its their poop I had to step over or accidentally in over and over again but hey, I'm a trooper. Because the paths kept winding erratically into each other or back down, we had to follow a few but we eventually got to the part of the hill where the rocks started. I took a few pictures along to way to show the progression up the hill and I really liked this one.
So we climbed up the first bit of rocks and the feeling was exhilarating! We saw Becky, Clara, and Bonnie coming up the long way and I got a couple of shots of them climbing the rocks. We climbed to the very top after they rejoined us and here's where I got the most amazing pictures since I went to Hawaii. I don't want to bore you with all of them so I'll try and pick one. Here it is.

If you look closely, you can see Phil's elbow in the lower right corner. This is a view of the coastline behind and to the north of the hill. While we were up there, we saw a group or wild horses galloping through the countryside. My camera had stopped working at that point for some reason but Phil got a great shot.

So I know I said I would only include one more shot from the top but I can't resist putting this one in cause its my favorite, hands down (what does that expression mean anyway?)! I am totally framing this one!
After we saw the horses and climbed down, we took another path to this amazing private cove with a white sand beach which is very rare in the UK. Most beaches are pebble beaches. It really made me happy to run along the sand and hear the waves crashing. We also got to see a tiny little waterfall over the edge of the small cliff we climbed down to get to the cove. Here's a shot of the cove from above:
While we were down there we got a surprise visit from a little seal who was so cute. He just popped his head up and Bonnie yelled "Seal!" and I hear "Snail!" and I was all "why is she excited about a snail?". Then I looked and saw it was a seal and it was so exciting. I waved at it and it looked at me. We totally had a moment.

After we left the private cove, we hiked to the public beach. The path we took led up the cliff and followed the edge all the way around the coast, it was breath taking! While I was on that cliff, I hit a rare spot of cell phone reception and got a call from my Grandma. I had just enough time to tell her I was on a cliff over looking the ocean before the call dropped. Not the best place to lose a call but those of you who know Norma won't be surprised to hear she wasn't phased or thought anything of it when I called her back. She's made of stronger stuff, that one.
Anyway, the public beach was also white sands and that made me very very happy. We ate lunch and drank hot chocolate at the little cafe there. Liza and Cathryn met us there and we decided to hike into town. I got a great shot of the hill from halfway into town that shows how incredibly far we walked but that shot was taken on Phil's camera because I mistakenly thought my batteries had died when in fact my camera was just shutting off for no reason. Nice, huh?

Well, at least it worked for the Murder Mystery party later that night which will be the topic of convo for Wild Wild Wales Part Tres! I know you're on the edge of your seat with excitement but barre with me a few more days. These things take longer to make then they look.
One last tid bit for this installment in the Wild Wild Wales series is what went down in town. St. David's has a beautiful cathedral and the ruins of the Bishop's Mansion were really cool looking from the outside. Those closed 40 minutes before we got to town but we did see the Cathedral. I tried to go give shopping in (oddly enough) the gift shop but that was closed. So we went to a pub instead for Bailey's hot chocolate. Yum!

Stay tuned for the next episode of "WILD WILD WALES!". In the meantime, I shall leave you with this hand painted digital photograph that isn't really hand painted but does depict the town of St. David's Wales in the distance complete with the added bonus of a view the hostel we stayed in and the sheep who's stuff I...well, anyway. Enjoy!

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