Monday, 25 March 2013

Sunday 24th March 2103, My first walk in Spring this year!

In common with most areas of the United Kingdom we have been experiencing some rather bleak and cold weather recently as my reports show. A rather dreadful Saturday was endured, snow fell steadily all day and we had shopping to collect for elderly relatives, much spinning of wheels and spraying of snow saw us out of our estate and the supermarket was duly visited and said goods distributed.

I could see little point in going for a walk, visibility was dire and temperatures were freezing so a venture to the pub was as much activity as I could muster!

Sunday was a little brighter and at least the snow had stopped, in early afternoon I set forth clad in full winter mountaineering gear, Yaktrax fitted to my boots to avoid any slips I fairly sped over the tops towards our neighbouring village of Kildwick, that may have been due to a fierce north easterly wind at my back!

The lambing season has been in full flow, these hardy youngsters were not letting their mum out of sight..

The snowfall has not been heavy as this shot over Cross Hills shows...

Any birds brave enough to take to the skies up here were soon whisked away into the distance by the wind, the forecast later viewed said that gusts had been up to 60mph!! I dropped down through fields to the canal and carried on westwards for a while..

I thought the mallards may be my only subject for the day!

The moorhens are tenacious though and constantly forage around the waters edge..

This pair of mallards seemed distinctly unsure whether to take to the water or not, they must be impervious to cold as they eventually went in:-)

Jackdaws are a lovely subject with their bright eyes..

I turned for home at this stage and faced the almighty wrath and force of the wind, goodness me it was tough even at valley level, I am quite a strong walker but it was a battle to make progress.

Another lamb shot near Kildwick as this youngster searched for some food..

The next photograph was a very unexpected one as some blue sky appeared!

A sight of a wren on the far bank alerted me to a photographic opportunity if I was patient, I huddled into a waterside shrub for some shelter and waited and watched, a couple of photographs were my reward..

Not great shots but to be honest I was grateful for anything!

The strength of the wind meant constantly changing skies, looking west over Gib Hill there was a real mixture..

The constant but fine snow of the previous day had been blown into drifts, this was the collection on  a steep bank by the canal..

A greylag goose appeared to be sleeping, a closer look discloses a state of alertness though:-)

A long distance zoom on a lapwing added to my meagre collection for the day..

And then as I battled on for last half mile or so a cute robin appeared on the towpath, I almost raised a smile...If my face had not been frozen into a grim but determined expression!!

Any reflections today would be made in the pub afterwards, no chance on here as the winds blasts across the water.

It was with some relief that I reached the boatyard at Silsden, the last couple of hundred yards within the shelter of the streets were somewhat easier. I did pause by the canal for this photograph of a male mute swan though...

And then after my "couple" of pints I wandered home, and a reminder in our garden that however tough the weather is nature always finds a wayof this tulip noses its way through the snowfall...

1 comment:

  1. Well done for braving the bitterly cold winds of last weekend. You were well rewarded for your efforts. Let's hope you'll be out pursuing your wildlfe hobby in warm Spring sunshine very soon.