A forecast of grey skies but no rain for today and I set myself the challenge of walking to Skipton and back. The outward route would take me across the moor I have recently been exploring, another visit will be made in clearer conditions as the views northwards up over the Yorkshire Dales are superb and worthy of some photographs on a good day.
The dull skies make photography a challenge and I was delighted how well this shot of a willow warbler came out.
The bridleway across the high point of the moor descends gradually, easy walking! Here I am looking back up to the forested section.
There were plenty of meadow pipits to be seen, all busy food gathering probably with lots of little mouths to feed, occasionally they will take a break on a fence or wall and offer an opportunity for a photograph:-)
The route leads to the splendidly named Jenny Gill, a tree and then gorse bush lined path leads down to Skipton.
Now the trees and bushes are in full bloom getting a clear sight of birds is becoming difficult, the songs ring out loud and clear from invisible choirs:-) This sparrow was an exception today as he perched on a gable end.
The colours of the blossom were beautiful, delicate creams and pinks blending to form a wonderful display.
If you asked anyone to compile a list of creatures that might be seen by a waterway how many would put a pheasant as a likely sight??
More usual suspects would be ducks and swans, here a cute duckling and a lovely pair of synchronised swans.
I was making good progress on my walk and it was time for a break, this lovely lane is a splendid spot to rest for a while.
The dullness of the sky is well demonstrated by the lack of definition in the background here.
I have been experimenting with various features on the Canon SX40, a heron about 250 yards away and photographed with a mixture of optical and digital zoom, handheld and the image stabilisation is impressive!.
Almost back in Silsden a pair of swans were shepherding their cygnets, they allowed them just far enough away from them for me to get this final shot.
Not the most spectacular walk from any perspective but good exercise, good practice with the camera and I was now heading for the pub so at least there was a happy ending!!!