Archive for walks

Beautiful Bluebells

Today we visited Otterford Lakes to see the bluebells in full bloom.  As we walked through the woods, you could see the shades of blue on the ground below the dappled trees.


As we walked further down hill we could see the swans on the lake.


We walked past the bridge over the lake and up to the higher meadow where there was an absolute carpet of bluebells, really lovely.


I took some views of the lake as we walked back down.


Some white narcissus were still blooming.


The pink Campion flowers were coming out too.


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Christmas walk and Christmas dinner

After breakfast and opening our presents we went for a walk up our favourite woods at Staple Hill.  It was a bit drizzly but as we passed people walking their dogs (some dressed with santa collars for the occasion) we exchanged cheery greetings of Merry Christmas. They’ve thinned out some of the fir trees now and you can just see the light through them.


We came across a small tree that had been decorated with baubles by some children who had left a note on it.


We stopped to take a Xmas selfie against the backdrop of the woods.


It started to clear a bit and we got a good view to the North.


So we had a go at another selfie.dsc01191

After our walk we popped into the local pub “The Candlelight” for a Christmas drink.  It was heaving with people and we whiled away quite some time chatting to friends before coming home to get the dinner on.  I had cooked the turkey last night and prepared the veggies this morning so there wasn’t much to do except put the potatoes in and then cook the veg.  We served up turkey dinner just before 3pm.


I’m looking a bit pink from standing over a hot stove, or was it the bubbles going to my head?


It is traditional to watch the Queen give her speech so after the main course we sat and watched that, then had a little snooze (only 2 glasses of Proscecco will send me to sleep), before Christmas pud and mince pies.

A few phone and Skype calls to family and that rounded off a lovely day.

Hope you enjoyed your Christmas Day.











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Sunny spring walk at Otterhead Lakes

Today was a glorious Spring day with blue skies and brilliant sunshine.  We decided a walk at Otterhead Lakes was in order. The scenery is always beautiful. We walked down to the first lake and a pair of swans were gracefully gliding over the water.


There was plenty of water rippling down the steps creating a waterfall.



We carried on following the water’s path to the little bridge where we posed.


And then further along the path to the second lake.



On our return the swans had come up closer.


Neil’s sister Carole was with us.


After our most enjoyable walk we made our way to the Candlelight pub for a quick pre lunchtime drink.  The pub was busy with lunchtime diners and there was a great atmosphere.

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June walk at Otterhead Lakes

We  had friends stay with us over the weekend and as the weather was sunny we went for a walk at Otterhead Lakes.


The walk down to the first lake was through woodland that was dappled with sunlight.


We passed lovely rhododendrons still in flower.


The water on the first lake was calm as a mill pond as they say.


The water level was low and not enough to cascade down the steps, only the bottom couple.


We stopped at the little bridge over the stream and our friends took our photo.


We remarked on how beautiful the ferns were along the stream.


When we reached the second lake we noticed how low the water level was.


The swans were standing on the lake bed.


This is the first time we have done this walk in June so we are not sure if low water is the norm or not.

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A lovely Easter weekend with our friends from Oz!!

Over the Easter weekend we were delighted to be visited by our friends from Australia Christine and Ian. I first met Chris when she came to my parents house for Xmas 30 years ago, and then about 24 years ago I went to Melbourne and stayed with her in Gisborne approximately 55 kilometres (34 mi) north-west of Melbourne.  We have corresponded on email, so kept in touch but not seen each other for a very long time and I had never met her partner Ian, and my hubby Neil had never met either of them. But we all got on like a house on fire. They have 40 acres of land in Seymour in the state of Victoria, Australia which is located 98 kilometres (61 mi) north of Melbourne. They too keep chickens and appreciated what we are trying to do with our 3 1/2 acres here.

On Easter Sunday we took them to one of our favourite walks up Staple Hill.  Chris loves to take photos and took even more than me! I snapped her capturing the view.


It was quite sunny with some low cloud so we couldn’t see all the way to Wales but they loved the woods and peacefulness of Staple Hill.

DSC00019This is me and Chris together.


I took this one of Chris and Ian when they weren’t looking but concentrating on their own photos.


Chris and I have exactly the same camera!.  All those miles between us and we have the exact same model of camera, that’s world markets for you.

We came home for lunch and opened our Easter eggs.   I had given Chris an Easter Chicken out of chocolate and she gave me a lovely Green and Black’s egg which we didn’t take long to demolish!!


Easter Monday and they were off on their travels again, all part of their 6 week European trip.  Still we managed to show them the lovely scenery around here, some country roads, 2 local pubs and Stentwood tea room as well as having a delicious roast lamb dinner yesterday.

I’m wondering how long it will be before we meet up again.  Not another 24 years I hope!!


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A lovely walk at Cricket St Thomas Lakes and Gardens

Yesterday, being a lovely day and us having Neil’s sister visiting, we took ourselves off to the Lakes and Gardens at Cricket St Thomas for a wander around.  We had never been before so it was a new one on all of us.  We started off by going past a little church that was originally for the estate.


Then as we turned the corner we saw a magnificent tree in the foreground of the house, which is now a Warner Leisure hotel.


You will note the figure doing a head stand in the foreground, that is actually a brass figure.  There were quite a few brass figures around the gardens, mostly of children playing.


As we walked down the hill there were great views of the lakes.


We saw in the distance a red bridge and walked nearer to see if we could cross it.


We found that it was a railway bridge and there used to be a little train that ran round the grounds and took visitors to Noel Edmund’s “Mr Blobby Land”, that isn’t there any more.  We couldn’t cross the bridge as it was closed to pedestrians.

There were waterfalls:


And a grotto with a waterfall in front:-


Everywhere you looked there were lovely views:-


We stumbled across a really tall monkey puzzle tree that must have been quite old, looking at it’s size.


At the bottom of a path I found a circular piece of modern art, through which I took a photo of a little bridge.


On the road out of the estate we passed fields of sheep and cows.  Here the cows (or more precisely bullocks) were right by the road, so I am glad they were not blocking our route.


Along the road out we saw this sign about pheasants:


As we exited the estate and were about to turn out onto the road we had this gorgeous view of the countryside.


All in all it was a lovely afternoon walk and we didn’t even have to pay an entry fee.

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Bluebell walk at Otterhead Lakes

Today, dodging the showers we went for a walk at Otterhead Lakes, one of my favourite places, to see all the bluebells.


The map shows the path we take, from the car park following the red line down to the first lake and then along the path through the woods to the second lake.  Earlier in the year we came here to see the carpets of snowdrops, now it is the turn of the bluebells.


When we got to the first lake one of swans came up to see if we had brought any bread, (but we had forgotten).


It was closely followed by some ducks, who were equally disappointed by us.


The swan upended itself to search for its own food.


As we walked along the path by the river we could see the carpets of bluebells in between the trees.


Neil posed on the little bridge across the stream.


In an established woodland the bluebells are native English where the bells hang to one side as opposed to Spanish bluebells where the bells are all the way round.


When we got the second lake there was a clump of yellow flowers that looked a bit like buttercups.


The water was calm on the lake.


Walking back we admired the bluebells in the woods along the bank.


We are so lucky to live in this beautiful part of the country.  come and visit us

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