Photo101: Water

When I saw today’s assignment I had a great idea, but unfortunately Mother Nature had other plans.

Last night a severe gale blew in from the Atlantic with winds gusting to over 80 miles per hour, my gentle stroll along a North Cornwall beach turned into a trial of endurance and for the first time in my life I was blown off my feet, several times!

Now please, before the “Laughter Police” are called, I wasn’t ever putting myself in danger or in need of rescue by others, I stayed well back from the sea and checked the tides before I ventured out. This also meant that I didn’t get as close to the surf as I planned for the original idea, but I got a few reasonable shots that I hope you enjoy.

As an aside, the lens got so thoroughly coated with salt in the strong north wind, that I was reduced to licking it to keep it clear, yeck!

Anyway here are the photos!


P1050238This last shot looks so benign and peaceful, it wasn’t, I just wish it had sound so you could hear the wind howling!

I hope that these are watery enough for everyone!

All taken today on the beach at Crackington Haven in North Cornwall; 50.7445N, 4.6377W.

Catch you all soon.


Just Blowin’ Away Some Cobwebs

OK, I know… I’ve been whingeing on for a bit about how I haven’t been out on my beloved Harley for ages, so I guess the first thing to say is, “Sorry about that!”

Whilst it seems like for ever to me, it’s actually only been eight weeks; such is the depth of withdrawal symptoms that I have been suffering!

Well, the good news is that the enforced riding break got busted last Saturday!

The day dawned bright and clear, we had rain in the early part of the night which nicely washed the salt off the road, so all looked fair for a quick breath of fresh air on two wheels. Apart from a quick return blast along the A30 between Launceston and Bodmin, something else a bit more interesting was also called for. Harley was running as smooth as ever and like me, seemed pleased to be out again. So lets head north-west for about 16 miles and find the delightful coastal village of Crackington Haven.

I hold a special affection for the place and its beautiful beach.

Many, many, years ago a young Dookes once spent a wonderful holiday there, playing the crashing surf and hunting in rock pools for crabs and shrimps. Today not much has changed, though over forty years have passed! The beach is still a mix of glorious sand bounded by rocky outcrops, with some of the highest sea cliffs in Britain.


Crackington is, in addition to being a super holiday location and when the tide is right an absolutely brilliant surf beach, amongst the most interesting geological locations along the North Cornwall Coast.

The rocks here date from the Upper Carboniferous period and are around 325 million years old. They originally started as mud and clay deposited in a relatively deep delta basin, which at that time lay roughly on the Earth’s Equator. These stones have moved around a bit! Over time the movement of the earth’s crust has compressed the mud into hard shales, sandstones and slates. In places the twisted and folded rocks show fantastic patterns in the cliffs.

Such is the geological importance of these rocks that they have been named the “Crackington Formation” and although they have been studied for well over 100 years, they are still yielding new fossils and data. Not bad for 325 million year old mud!IMG_0496

The air was clean and gin clear, sometimes it can be easy to forget that we are blessed with such vivid light in our corner of the world, but Saturday certainly gave me a gentle reminder. Standing there on the beach, soaking up the view and atmosphere, I got a real sense of being at one with the world.


Riding home, the air temperature was beginning to fall; 6 C/43 F, boy was I glad of my heated gloves and jacket liner!

Harley and I rolled back into my workshop after a fifty mile long smile; Mrs Dookes greeted us, “Good ride?”

“Yeah, great thanks… just been blown’ away some cobwebs!”

I’m back in black.

Catch you all later,