In an earlier post HERE I said the Stiperstones ridge has to be one of Shropshire’s most compellingly strange landscapes. And that its cragginess was wrought by the scything, crushing and cracking action of ice during the last glacial period some 150,000 – 11,000 years ago. Periods of alternating thaw and freeze also made their mark. But now I’m also noticing another striking feature – the way the geology is so determinedly set on the diagonal, the outcrops’ pitch a piece of ‘set-in-stone’ evidence attesting to recent epic earth forces.
When I say ‘recent’ I am of course wearing my prehistorian’s hat. Also I should make clear that the word ‘last’ as in ‘the last glacial period’ does not mean ‘final’, or that we have seen the end of ice ages. We are currently in an interglacial period, otherwise known as the Holocene. In the past, ice ages have occurred in regular cycles, beginning in the Quaternary about 2.5 million years ago, coinciding with the formation of the Arctic ice sheet. There is no reason to suppose that that this cycle has stopped. Today’s sudden drop in temperature is also giving me pause for thought. Thank goodness for alpaca leg warmers and woolly socks is all I can say (and that’s in the house).
Now for more Stiperstones diagonals:
Lens-Artists: diagonals This week Patti sets the challenge and provides an inspiring photo-essay on making the most of diagonal vistas and subjects.