Tuesday, 18 June 2013

An Unexpected Outing

The farmer is working exceptionally long hours at the moment spreading slurry on the newly silaged fields to help the grass grow again for second-crop silage.  He is leaving the house at eight thirty in the morning, with a packed lunch, and not returning until about six in the evening.   This means that Tess and I are on our own for the day.

Not so today though.   Friend G rang and invited me to lunch and then a walk.   Shortly after ten o'clock she collected me (I still cannot drive) and we went to her house for coffee in the garden.  She has only a small garden but it is full of greenery and very pretty.   There are pots of hosta and ferns, lots of self-sown aquelegia, clematis in full flower - everywhere is lovely.   She has a lovely little grotto which catches the sun and we sat there for our coffee, then went inside for lunch.

Then G, J, M and I drove the short distance to Foxglove Covert Nature Reserve (do have a look at their website) for a walk.   It really is the most interesting place, not least because it is in the middle of the largest army garrison in Europe - Catterick Garrison.

We walked for a good hour on well-constructed and maintained paths, through lots of different habitats.  There were pools with tadpoles and tiny fish, there were areas of heathland, boggy areas, tiny rivers, a lake, plenty of hides, masses of wildflowers (ragged robin, tormentil, cotton grass, germander speedwell, yellow water iris, bluebells, marsh orchids), butterflies, birds and a beautifully peaceful atmosphere.

We are lucky to have such a facility so near.  Apart from a small full time staff, there are masses of volunteers who help to maintain the site and various groups visit - W I's, schools, lots of organisations - and every Sunday morning they net and ring birds and have a huge variety of species.  Wednesday (tomorrow) is a moth day and friends G and J are going to help with moth identification.   I shall not be going as I have a moth phobia - and the furrier the moth, the worse the phobia is!

I took a few photographs for you to enjoy.  The nest photograph is of a nest in the long grass.   Whatever used it (bird, small mammal?) has long gone - but it certainly chose a lovely place to rear its young.



Heather said...

What a lovely post Pat. My son was stationed at Catterick for a while but I don't think he had the chance to appreciate the Nature Reserve - it may not have been created then. Your photos are beautiful and make me feel as if I had been with you.
Glad your weather is allowing the farmer to get on with all those pressing tasks.

angryparsnip said...

What a lovely post today.

cheers, parsnip

Terry and Linda said...

Lovely post! I always enjoy touring with my blog friends.


Reader Wil said...

Thanks for the lovely walk. It is so peaceful and quiet in the country.
Have a great week.
Wil.ABCW Team

Reader Wil said...

I forgot to tell you that the wombat is not aggressive and the one on the photo is small because it's a young one. The one we saw on the road was bigger, the size of a small dog.

Woman Seeking Center said...

Such a beautiful stroll - I could almost share the scents and sounds of the stroll - thank you!

It sounds to have been a lovely day from beginning to end :-) A day good for the heart n soul...


Hildred said...

These wonderful unexpected surprise days are a real treat, and your photos are lovely, Pat. It must have been a very pleasant day.

MorningAJ said...

That looks like a lovely place to visit.

Bovey Belle said...

What a lovely serendipitious day. My husband was stationed at Catterick too, 50 years ago . . . During the infamous 1962/63 winter!

The Nature Reserve looks beautiful and your photos certainly captured the atmosphere there. Lovely.

mrsnesbitt said...

Lovely Pat - can't beat a good walk out in the countryside. We are off to the beach today!

Em Parkinson said...

Wonderful post and walk - thanks Pat.

Elizabeth Wix said...

Such a super post.
Wish I could have joined you for your lovely outing.
And, yes, I'm back in NY
but still have a billion Vienna photos!

crafty cat corner said...

Spreading slurry sound like a mucky job. lol

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thanks for coming on the walk with me.

Rare Lesser Spotted said...

Thanks for the pictures. I get a sense of tranquility when I walk round the reserves, a lovely place to see nature and to rediscover oneself in peace and quiet