Monday, 6 January 2014

Winter Dog Walking and Messing About in the Woods

My First for 2014.

With the UK gradually sinking under Floods and the associated Torrential Rain, our usual Dog Walking route has become a bog. So when this happens we go 'Off Road' and make our own routes through the winter woodland.

One of the features during the rainy season is that the 'Springs begin to flow once the water table reached the requisite level. The main stream of the three that appear flows rapidly depositing Thousands of Litres a day into a Pond and an Aquifer.

My wife Ann and I have made it a small diversionary project to clear the stream of the layers of leaves and branches which have fallen in. This weekend, the very heavy rain has helped us immensely by driving through the lower, deeper and inaccessible part moving the deep bank of leaves away, so its 'Job Done' for now.

Here are a few photos I took today of the result showing the underlying gravel bed.  

 Here, where one of the Boggy Footpaths crosses the source of the stream,  an extra source appears from above the Plastic Pipe.

 Looking down the hill the gravel is clear even though more leaves have found their way back in. forming zig zags.

 A Twig falls in and a small waterfall forms in no time.

 Here, Larger Water Falls are formed as the stream traverses these thicker Tree Roots.

 Some historical meandering has occured here?

 Here is our dog 'Digby' making one of his cherished daily trips along the stream

 As with most streams, this one is gathering more water as it descends the hill.

This immovable Fallen Tree forms another small waterfall with a small 'sand bed' beginning to form in front of the log.

Gathering pace now as the water moves towards the steeper incline.

 Here the water passes over the first route and under the second one. Immediately after a storm the water shoots straight over both roots.

As the incline increases the depth of the Gully also increases making access more tricky for us oldies.

Dog in the stream again.

 The Deeper Gully where the weekend storm has driven its own clearing in the bed of leaves.

Another deep drop over yet more roots.

 A Blurred shot of the remaining steep run down to the pond and Aquifer.

 The Upper Pond.

 The Upper Pond looking up hill.

The end of the line as the stream drops into the Aquifer which never gets any deeper.

Continuing on the walk we head off through the woods.

 A Dog on a Mission.

We cross over another of the less used Formal Footpaths - Looking Downhill & then Uphill.

Ann, dodging some low branches.

 A group of protective cages created by the RSPB Volunteers.

 Here is that dog again.

 This secondary stream only runs for for about 30 meters before going back into the ground.

In amongst the bracken and fallen trees. The Silver Birches here seem prone to falling over.

 Down the hill I can see the four Giant Redwoods grouped around another dry pond.

 In the middle of the woods, a Crab Apple Tree has released its fruit. 

 The third Gully with no visible water flow so far this year.

Climbing out of the deep gully. 

Among the tangle of Fallen Trees. 

 One of the many fungi examples to be found in these woods.

It is useful to be short in this environment. 

 Caught on Camera again.

 Two more Giant Redwoods 

More fallen Silver Birches. 

 One of the many numbered Bird Nesting Boxes to be seen here.

 Close to the Redwood

The soft spongy Redwood Bark 

Tunnelling in the Bushes

 Out in the meadow we meet up with Digby's sister 'Ella'

 Some 'Grandfathers Beard' coming into flower.

 More Fallen Trees, Horse Chestnuts this time.

Finally, we are back to the White Horse Inn just before Closing time for our welcome Coffee and one disgruntled Digby having his legs dried.

 Best Wishes

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