While visiting my sister in Bristol with my stepfather for Christmas, we decided to finally escape the endless eating - by me, mostly - and escape into the countryside, where while it was still raining heavily as it did all trip, we would have a change of scene from wet Bristol pavements.
The beach not appealing on a day when the sea and the land were virtually the same thing, we headed inland for Cheddar Gorge, a famous natural formation to the south of the city comprising of a narrow road surrounded by towering crags and the site of the earliest complete human skeleton found in the UK.
Despite the appalling weather, it was amazing how many waterproofed figures were walking up and down the gorge. There were cyclists too, serious types of expensive road bikes grinding their way up the climb through the gorge as the rain hosed them down.
Evidence of human activity was everywhere - rubbish and more disgustingly human waste at the various stopping points. My sister and stepfather collected a box of the the former and thankfully not the latter.
It's really upsetting that supposedly outdoor loving types would do this.
The gorge indeed is spectacular, looming cliffs of slate and limestone, where apparently peregrines and ravens fly, although they were too smart to be doing it on such a rotten day and were probably laughing at the brightly coloured humans scurrying about from their lofty eyries.
The village is surface pretty, but as with so many similar places it's largely filled with tourist tat - genuine cheddar cheese on sale, no doubt at about £5 per gram. We couldn't find a cafe open to shelter from the weather in as we trundled up and down the village.
Still, it was a fun little jaunt, and I'd like to come again in warmer months when there might be some flora and fauna to see. I'd love to see a raven for the first time!
All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 01.01.23