Sunday, 23 September 2012

22nd September, a day of two halves..literally!!

The meteorologists nowadays have some different seasonal dates, I prefer the old method of solstice and equinox, it feels right and for me it fits with the change in temperature and animal migration.

A group of swallows were gathered on the telephone cables on our street as we set out to Barden Bridge where I would be dropped off, the ladies were setting out on a shopping trip, I was out for the day just wandering wherever my fancy took me. The Autumnal equinox, a day of equal light and darkness, the sun was rising and mist rose as it evaporated above the beautiful river Wharfe.

I set off down river and quite soon a group of juvenile goldfinches were seen..

Robins are never far away, this one hopped around chirping its joyous song and pleading for its picture to be taken:-))

The Wharfe is my best source of dipper photographs, high water at the moment due to recent rain meant that many of their usual perching rocks were submerged, I saw several working from the far bank and on a river that can be 50 feet wide and in shadow any attempts at photographs were futile!

Wandering on and emerging from the trees I was now in bright sunlight, ever alert to one of my favourite birds at last I got chance of a couple of close shots of the lovely dipper..

I did a 180 degree turn here, over the wooden bridge by the Cavendish Pavilion, kingfishers were on my mind, no sightings so far but I was determined to give them my best shot.

Reaching the hut up beyond the Strid I decided on a short break, always a difficult place for photographs but great for seeing things. Strong sun makes dark shadows, 1/50th second is not a sharp enough shutter speed for moving wildlife...

The little woodmouse was a bonus, time to walk on but pretty soon I got this lovely shot of a chaffinch..

Back in the dark woodland I was enjoying the beauty of the birdsong and the tinkling and resonant sounds of the small streams that feed into the river.

Back into the now warm sunlight again it was time to lose a layer of clothing, not literally though! Things got exciting at this point, a blur of swift flying blue...kingfisher heading up river, I followed scrutinising every square inch of riverside foliage for about two miles, nothing apart from a dosing goosander.

Worse was to follow, unless you are a hopeless optimist like I neared Barden Bridge for the third time today another kingfisher flew past me up river, no I did not turn and follow. I will see them when the time is right:-)

Heading back down with the flow I paused to capture the Small Tortoiseshell butterfly, an unexpected pleasure:-))

And then a big surprise, just by the aqueduct a group of corvids (rooks, crows etc) appeared, except one looked distinctly was very different, a red kite!

A grey wagtail alerted me to its presence as it chirped merrily, a wonderful bird which will soon be migrating like so many others.

I now made my way past the ruins of Bolton Priory, a place of stunning beauty and one where I will try to visit when there are no tourists in the photograph...tough task!

My past as a competitive sportsman still kicks in, the bus timetable in my head says if I can kick on for the next four miles or so a bus will appear to carry me homewards...

Time though for a zoom up on Beamsley Beacon, (Howber Hill on OS maps) the site for many of my sunset pix..

And a more distant view with a lovely layer of cloud..

The final wander down the Dales Way to Addingham was completed in good time, enough time for a shot across the weir, the end of a wonderful day in the sun:-))

1 comment:

  1. So many wonderful photos on this one, hard to pick out a favourite. Really enjoyed following yourtrek and exploration, a very fulfiling walk for a wildlife enthisiast to say the least !