Returning home after big adventures in Chile at the start of the year, I decided my time back in Cardiff should be spent adventuring around my home. Not wanting to do any of this by myself, I had to find some friends. What better place to look than a Facebook Microadventure group? In May 2016 I organised a social so everyone in this virtual group could meet in real life, and from there began a summer of exploration in South Wales.
We had a group sorted. Me, the Facebook group organiser. Eva, a budding photographer. Robert, a 9-5 office worker. Finally Chris, who will say yes to pretty much anything. And so we set off one Thursday evening on an adventure.
Leaving Cardiff after work, we met on the same train with everyone getting on at different stops, which was an achievement in itself when the ticket machine decided to eat up Robert’s card!
We had no real plan for the night, only to buy some beer, find a chippy, and find a hill to sleep on. We got off at Taff’s Well station and after finding beer and a chippy, the hill was easier to see than to actually get to.
As we continued to walk surrounded by trees, bushes, and with no sleep space in sight, we wondered if we’d ever find the right path up before dark. Through the combined powers of a map, a phone and a bit of guesswork we eventually found ourselves in the open space above the treeline.
We admired the view and the gorgeous colours of the sky before setting out beds for the night.
With sleeping space sorted we cracked open the beers and played Cards Against Humanity while we waited for darkness to take hold. The perfect game to get to know each other!
We spent the rest of the evening messing around with lights and camera settings for some hilarious and beautiful results. Here’s a selection of the best:
It was now well past midnight and some people had to be in work by 8am, so we tucked in to our bivvy bags and got all the sleep we could.
Thanks to the late night beers, I woke up at 4:30am with a desperate need for the loo. Turns out it was a blessing in disguise as the sun was creeping over the horizon.
My noisy bivvy got everyone else stirring from their sleep, so they got to see the beautiful stillness of sunrise too. I was still tired so I quickly dozed off and waited for my alarm to wake me.
The sun rose higher and the morning got brighter as we carried on dozing. The grass was super wet from dew, but it made for some pretty pictures.
A warm comfy bed, not much sleep and a fresh crisp morning made getting up difficult, but it had to be done to continue on with our microadventure in order to get back in time for work. Instead of heading back to Taff’s Well station where we’d come from, we decided to carry on over the hills to make it more of a journey.
Soon we were out of the wilds and back walking through suburbia looking a little out of place.
We all hopped on the train at Caerphilly and joined the morning commuters on their way to work.
Me and Eva had a little time to spare once we arrived in Cardiff, so we ended our Microadventure with a cooked breakfast at Wetherspoons before parting ways.
Not a bad start to a summer of microadventues. We met on a train after work on Thursday evening and everyone was either back at their office desk or at home by 9am on Friday. Until next time!
If you live near Cardiff and are interested in having your own microadventures, then join our Facebook group! Cardiff Microadventures members share their adventures, find people to go with and we even have a social occasionally. Thank you Eva for all the photos used in this blog.