Geograph Blog ::

What next

By David Howard

Now the summer is almost over, and it's getting dark at 7 then this long era is drawing to a close, and with the final trip to Battle last week have now visited all eight compass points to a reasonable extent, with possibly the winter to gather new energy and begin another mission in spring 2013. The Geograph map project began last year, having previously added whatever I happened to have wherever I'd been, and began seeing what increases and records I could create deliberately. The compass points was the final mission planned, as once you've made a fairly even journey to all extremes all others of a lesser distance will appear swamped by the main spider and unless making some other purpose tend to be a little but uneconomical on both time and fuel. But I tend to find such vacuums filled by their nature, and while I would feel lost not going on a long trip every week or two then maybe a few more will come to me next spring when the days get longer again. Meanwhile in the close season I have completed hectads TQ 18,28 and 29, and begun 19 with seventeen squares left to bag. After that I expect once a week or so I should be able to reach short hops to places like east London, Seer Green, and if really feeling ambitious a road sign (I always hope remains in place) in Shenfield. And while restricted to light duties gradually new roads and spots occur to me such as the already mentioned Mersea Island, and short of new myriads which have an A1 and A40 access respectively, am wondering about Bournemouth and Ashford as followups, although would love a decent saloon car as mine struggles on motorways compared to what I used to drive when petrol was a reasonable amount. I will also return to scenic photos on my doorstep, not because there are any new ones to take but because the new camera can cope with poor conditions and will triple the number of reasonable views compared to many which looked like I'd used an old phone to take them on. And of course I will find other things to do besides photography, like gardening which was the first casualty of alternating between the car and the computer since March or so, and no doubt others.

Meanwhile here are some highlights of the long days of 2012, which extended me from 6 to 8 myriads, added 3 completed hectads and crossed the 8000 photos line. It also added a number of new counties, from Cambridgeshire TL2555 : Track through fields off the B1040 near Waresley by David Howard to Northants, SP7558 : Queen Eleanor Road, Northampton by David Howard Suffolk TL6261 : Layby on Barbara Stradbroke Avenue by David Howard, Warwickshire SP2332 : Gate to Wolford Wood by David Howard and Gloucestershire SP2132 : Cotswold Business Village, London Road by David Howard, only finding a few miles more would have added Worcestershire but not all maps have obvious boundaries when looking at the roads to navigate instead. As Huntingdonshire no longer exists that can't be the next, but as they moved Dorset to just west of Christchurch that may be the next to follow. And if I can persuade anyone to go up the M4 for me may add Wiltshire as well. I think trying the A30 and heading to Salisbury will double the time from 2 to 4 hours and be beyond the call of duty to attempt the return journey using A roads. But these all add ideas by just thinking about it and in fact the longest trip has been one of the quickest simply as it was major roads door to door with absolutely no traffic besides the usual in Oxford. The featured photo was one of my favourite spots of 2012 on the sea front at Leigh on Sea.

An off-road square for TQ28, although a road exists to the north. This involved climbing a gate to a private road a minute before a storm began TQ2299 : Dyrham Lane, Ridge by David Howard.
TQ2997 : Trent Park main building, Middlesex University by David Howard A fully off road square with the longest walk required so far.
Crossing the border TM0100 : Bridgewick Road by Brook farm by David Howard followed by another straight after TR0199 : The entrance to Bridgewick farm by David Howard, requiring counting telegraph poles on the satellite view as the road is not on Streetview. Getting into the congestion charge for TQ28 by waiting till it ends (only just occurred to me) TQ2880 : South Audley Street overlooking the Hilton Hotel by David Howard and the advent of the new camera continuing the same area TQ3281 : London Wall at the junction of Moorgate by David Howard. Previously there were both a far larger congestion zone, removed recently allowing a daytime journey into Paddington and Kensington TQ2681 : Chilworth Street, Paddington by David Howard, and only added any by going at the weekend and the Christmas week when it was suspended. These were also taken deliberately during the school holidays (and general ones) to halve the journey time at the very least. One available loose end is Lea Bridge Road (traffic permitting) to make another line south of the next crossing up via Walthamstow which has proved one of the worst routes of the 21st century, having used it regularly in the previous one, especially the 60s and 70s when my grandma lived past it, and has now become virtually unusable. But when did explorers ever have an easy time of it?

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Marker only shows grid square

Thu, 13 Sep 2012 at 03:54
Grid Square
geotagged! TQ8685
Chosen Photo

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