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dog walking on the Malverns

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Last week Abi suggested we go for a walk on the Malvern hills.  Great idea!  We were joined by another friend of theirs, bringing the total to five humans and three dogs.

We met in the car park at British Camp, and headed up to Worcestershire Beacon.  As usual there were plenty of other people (and dogs!) around, and it was a bit windy (again, nothing new there).  Mmm, lovely fresh air.

dogs by the trig point
the dogs with their male humans at the trig point

From the Beacon we kept going around Sugarloaf hill, then headed back via the Chase Inn for a nice pub lunch.  The staff there were more than happy to have three dogs snoozing next to the fire while we ate, and even provided treats for them.

gorse bushes and distant hills
gorse and scenery

I'd decided to try out the Buff I got in my goody bag on the Outdoor Bloggers weekend recently (courtesy of Kitshack - thanks!) It's an original Buff in 'mountaintop' pattern, and it did a good job of keeping my hair from flying all over the place.  However I did eventually swap to a fleecy hat as the wind was a bit too cold.  We soon found an alternative use for it though: keeping Bonnie's neck warm, and making her look extra stylish along with her fancy coat :)

dog modelling a Buff

At the end of our walk we got ice creams (yes, I realise it's November!), and Bonnie was quite keen to help us eat them.  I went for Damson and Sloe gin flavour, which was delicious even if I did end up putting my gloves on to hold the tub...

Gloucester's rubbish fireworks

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I've been the Gloucester Docks fireworks display many times since moving here.  When I lived in the actual docks it was obviously rather convenient (and I didn't have to pay to get in), but I've been back several times since because it's always been very good.

Sadly this year it was rubbish, and judging by social media reaction the other 9,999 people there agreed with me.

We arrived quite soon after the gates opened, having not been organised enough to book in advance (but that's ok, because apparently including fees it actually cost *more* to prebook....).  Jon wanted a beer, so we wandered over to the bar where we found a very long queue and no alcohol being served. Hmm.  Massive queues for food too.

fireworks

We found friends and made our way into the crowd ready to watch the display at 7:15.  As usual, there was an announcement that it would actually start at half past.  But that's fine, they always seem to be running late.  Half past came and went.  The man doing the PA advised us to "have a beer" while we waited.  Oh, if only we could...

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Cold Aston

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Last Sunday's bike ride was an early one, due to other commitments later in the day.  An overcast and slightly humid morning for another Cotswolds ride - our third from the guidebook.

We started by the pub in Cold Aston and rode down the wonderfully named Bangup Lane.  I'm not used to starting a ride by going downhill, so that was a bit weird!

fields and track

The bridleways are all 'named' ones, with diamonds on the OS map.  However the names on the map (Diamond Way, Macmillan Way) didn't seem to feature on signposts - and the Sabrina Way we saw signed isn't called that on the map!  Not really a huge problem though as the route is very obvious.

I rode almost half way before realising my forks were still locked, which should tell you a lot about the terrain!

The final section bridleway was this beautiful stretch through an avenue of trees.  I absolutely love autumn colour.

autumn colours on a tree lined path
so pretty

14.5km of bridleways/tracks and a few bits of tarmac, with 230ish metres of ascent.  This was such a lovely ride, we'll definitely do it again - maybe in an evening next summer.  There was nothing technical or difficult, and not much navigation required either.