Following a thread posted on my visit to Stonehenge I noticed that I had commented on my Avebury post that I still had to have a look at a local stone circle in Shropshire: Mitchell’s Fold Stones. That comment was made in March 2014.
So on Saturday, in bright sunshine I decided to take the shortish drive (25 miles) to find these stones. As we turned off the road and approached White Grit (Powys) the covering of snow on the lane alerted me to the fact that maybe this was not such a good idea.
Continuing up the lane to the car park with the ice/skid light illuminating on my dashboard I hoped that I would be able to turn around at the end. Reversing down this track was not really an option. The sun was still shining, though there was an ominous black cloud in my rear mirror.
As with many prehistoric sites Mitchell’s Fold is subject of legend. It is said that a fairy gave a magic cow in times of famine which produced an endless supply of milk. An evil witch tried to milk her into a sieve, and realising the trick the cow disappeared. The witch was turned into a stone and a circle of stones was built to ensure she could not escape.
The stone circle is not too far from the parking area, but the temperature was somewhere around 2°C and the wind was raw. The landscape (that which was still visible) looked amazing. Wrapping up in scarves and gloves and hiking boots we headed up towards the stones, which were sadly hidden in the blizzard that then hit us!
I tried – honest I did, but I can’t say that this was my best photographic venture despite risking frostbite.
Oh, well, I will try again in the summer – this vista is well-worth exploring, stones or no stones! And there are barrows and cairns in the area too.
(This stone circle was constructed in the Bronze Age, over 3,000 years ago, using dolerite stones from Stapeley Hill. Today there are 15 stones arranged in a rough circle, but there may have been as many as 30).
If you enjoy a walk, long or short, then have a look at Jo’s site where you are welcome to join in.
48 thoughts on “Wintery Blues”
I’ll be interested to see your photos in the summer and compare them with these. It looks so bleak. Even you were nearly frostbitten, these photos are quite lovely.
Thanks! I really must remember to go back, it is probably quite lovely in late August.
Oh Jude you are a trooper, nothing would possess me to go up there in that temperature. I’m glad you did though, I love your photos. especially number 8!
Well, you see Gilly, I didn’t know it was going to actually snow on us! The sky was bright blue ahead. And once I was that close there was no way I was going home without actually trying to find the stones. I like that image too, the tree-line on the edge drew my eye.
Poor photos? I don’t think so. I love the palette in this post; the story of the stones; the starkness; and the sense of isolation. Thank you for braving blizzards.
(Pardon my Southern Hemisphere ignorance: is the b&w effect reality or post-processing?)
You are too kind Meg 🙂
All the photos are au natural except for the one with the two figures and the last one which were post-processed. It didn’t look that colourless though!
What an adventure Jude, braving the elements. Thank goodness you didn’t have to back out!!! Love the wintery, moody effect the weather has given to your images.
Backing out would not have been much fun. I was also relieved that no one was coming the opposite direction, there was nowhere to pull over unless into a snowy ditch!
Brave, intrepid explorer you are Jude…
Brrrr! Stunning shots, though.
Thanks Elizabeth, it is stunning scenery.
Superb photos and a great narrative. Looks very cold out there. I have walked over the moors in the cold looking for circles myself, so I know how you must have felt.
I’ll have another attempt when it is a bit warmer!
lovely winter scenes – love the blue truck one the most – and give the post a gold star like your other commenter did! ha!
I wish I HAD the blue jeep, that really is the type of vehicle one should drive in Shropshire. My car is a very low-slung saloon car, not good for off-roading!
Ah, Jude, the risks you take for your photo fans! I wonder what happens to the stones that were there originally and have disappeared. Are they typically found and identified elsewhere ?
Stones are moved or broken up I believe. Some were used for buildings, others moved where cultivation of crops occurs, some are buried. It makes you appreciate the stone circles that are still standing!
Thanks for the info ! These are always so fascinating to me. Would love to be there during a full moon dancing with flowers in my hair 🙂
Well, I for one thank ye kindly for venturing out in such conditions to give me such atmospheric and, more importantly, chilling photographs after a day spent wandering the city in 33C heat. 🙂
Ah, yes, that heat. So happy to send you snow 🙂 Supposed to be more at the weekend! Just wet at the moment 😦
Grey skies in winter do not lend themselves to great photo opportunities. Having said that however, the mood you captured in this outing is amazing. I know EXACTLY what kind of day it was 🙂 Good for you in venturing out anyway.
I agree that this looks like a perfect place for a warm weather re-visit 🙂
There was lots of blue sky around until we reached the moors! I was surprised how monotone these images came out.
I’m looking outside right now and seeing unending monotone. Winter. Oh yes, and it’s snowing.
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