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Sunday, 3 April 2016

Shobdon Hill, Wapley Hill, and High Vinalls (Marilyns)

Shobdon. Hill SO 381 640
Wapley Hill SO 347 624
High Vinalls SO477 724

Shobdon involved a steep field followed by a steep ploughed field followed by deciduous woodland on muddy tracks (it had rained heavily last night), well at least there was a bit of variety.This was another impressive hill fort. I have watched many Time Team programmes and am always amused at the staggering assumptions the academics make. A single piece of pot an inch and a half across has them telling us that this was a "high status" Roman villa occupied by a high ranking Roman military man. Well, what about these massive ring ditches? They tell us that they were fortifications, but I don't believe that. Surely these imaginative, romantic academics can use their powerful imaginations to come up with something more interesting - what about a race track for rabbits? And what were our careless ancestors doing leaving coins all over the place for us to find?

On the way back, halfway across the ploughed field I met two guys ascending. They had a clear view back on the route I had come from for three hundred yards or so, but strangely asked me if I was with a group.

Wapley Hill was dull. A climb through some trees then a traversing path not cut into the hillside but on an irritatingly and uncomfortable ankle-twisting slant. This emerged on to a forestry Land Rover track which rose very gently for a couple of hundred yards to arrive at an almost undefined high point with a step off the track for ten yards into trees just to be sure I was on the highest point - that was fortunately confirmed by the GPS.

For Wapley Hill I put lat/long into Tom Tom. The map showed a picnic area off the road on a track leading up to the summit. Tom Tom warned me that " part of your route is on an unpaved road, do you want to continue". I confirmed, but I had to go through a couple of other warnings before Tom Tom believed me.

On arrival the car park was huge with three separate areas, walking route boards, mountain bike track boards and people everywhere. A quick and uninteresting ascent took me to the top in about twenty minutes.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


afootinthehills said...

I detect that you found this a less than satisfying day Conrad or the least satisfying anyway.

Enjoyable to read as usual though.

Sir Hugh said...

Afoot - I think you are near the mark, but I do enjoy all my outdoor trips. Even if it is non- stop rain all day there is satisfaction in rising to the challenge, and that is better than mundane tramping round the edge of crop fields, so everything is relative. Today the highlight was the hill fort and the rest was, by contrast, less interesting. If your mission is climbing hills you should have no doubt that you are standing on the summit when you get there!

Sent from my iPad

Anonymous said...

"a steep field followed by a steep ploughed field" sounds inviting.
You are going like a rocket this trip Conrad.
Must be the rhythm of those Tom Tom drums.
I presume you have avoided the rain, is there an equivalent of Diane on Radio/TV Shropshire. Just thought do you have a TV in your Romany vehicle?

Sir Hugh said...

BC - I have had no rain whilst walking at all mostly sunshine. This morning started with fog but soon cleared. The local BBC news here is a cut out cardboard fiasco compared with NW Tonight. Diane still reigns despite her strange dress sense.

gimmer said...

Seneca would have some apposite comment on your enterprise and the question of the virtue of expending time and effort in summitting hills of marginal intrinsic interest compared with their function in a personally important project of completing this 'set' of summits arbitrarily defined by someone else.
I wonder whether he would think it time well-spent (his views on walking for pleasure can be guessed at on the basis of his general views on 'preoccupations' compared with philosophical cogitation but there again maybe he would have liked the Nietzschian notion that the only thoughts of value are those had whilst walking and thus that walking at leisure was an aid to a proper life.
Discuss - now the objective 'preoccupation' is nearing completion, you must be eager to dwell on this conundrum at greater length than your 3G posting allows!

Sir Hugh said...

Gimmer - "The value" you refer to arises from the innate human characteristic to explore in all senses of the word, thus continually developing the species. If S questions that value and suggests that such actions should be suppressed so as to make room for something that is more laudable (in his opinion) I cannot agree.

I sympathise more with Nietzche, but as I said in a recent post some of my best thoughts come upon me when I take a hot bath. Maybe N never tried that?

By the way your second paragraph is devoid of punctuation and contains an opening bracket that does not get closed - perhaps you are rivalling Proust for long sentences?

Sent from my iPad

gimmer said...

My deepest apologies: that comment was meant to go against your later post - it must have escaped (obviously on sparrows wings) before editing, as, clearly, it belongs there, prompted as it was by your own musing in that post on, and assessments of, that general question, and the oddities that are involved in pursuing it, not Seneca's.
As I understand him, one of his philosophical 'preoccupations' was to encourage self-examination and self-detachment, not to make value judgements, except in the case of sloth, idleness, vice and corruption, none of which seem to appear to be very relevant here !

Sir Hugh said...

Gimmer - the play that I have just finshed reading majors on the questions of power corrupting and the effcts of earthly pleasures on self will which may link up with some of S's thoughts as you describe them.

Desth and the King's Horseman - Wole Soyinka

Nobel prize winner.