Hi, My name is Matthew Cooper and I live in Wells, Somerset.
Wells is the smallest city in England and something of a well-kept secret. It has the most beautiful medieval architecture and one of the finest cathedrals in the country. But even in the U.K. few people know very much about it.
So why am I writing about gorges?
Only a mile from where I live is Ebbor Gorge in the little village of Wookey Hole. It is a lovely place at the foot of the Mendip Hills. There are a set of caves created in the same way as nearby Cheddar Gorge only eight miles away.
As a teenager I would spend a lot of time at Ebbor. It was a place of adventure. Now I am older, it is a great place for me to relax and just walk.
On the steep climb up to the viewing point at the top, you can often see deer, foxes and badgers - if you move quietly!
I love it!
Since my geography studies at school I have enjoyed reading about gorges, how they were formed and the history and events associated with many of them.
It is not an all consuming passion. I do have many other interests, especially sport. After all, it is not a good thing to be only one-dimensional. But as places to go and visit, to enjoy the dramatic scenery of cliffs and woods and water, I think they are unbeatable.
So this interest has led me to visit many gorges around the world.
Whenever I travel I usually have one or two on my itinerary.
I always find them relaxing and visually stunning. Not too sure why they relax me. Maybe it is the fact that they often have water in them, and its that sound and movement that pleases me.
So far I have visited gorges in the UK and also in France, Germany, Greece, Spain, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand and even Samoa.
In Western Samoa
Sad to say I haven`t been to any of the great ones in the United States as yet but I have been reading about them for years. But I know I will get to enjoy them one day!
For me the highlight - so far - has been canoeing through the Katherine Gorge in Australia. It was an amazing and unforgetable experience. I often catch myself dreaming about it. I shall return!
Maybe I will better that experience when I Base Jump the New River Gorge Bridge! A long-held ambition. Or as my friends say, the early onset of dementia!
So I do hope you enjoy reading these pages. The site is still in its infancy and will continue to grow.
Me, having fun away from a gorge!