We pulled up into the parking space at the end of the Valley Wood expecting it to be full but there were only Brian and Heather parked up waiting for us. Perhaps the cold weather was keeping people away. Although cold, again only 10C, it was quite bright with mixed sun and overcast and still that bitter north easterly off the sea. The countryside is now beginning to look lush despite the lack of rain. The paths are bone hard and well worn now following the high footfall during lockdown. Dog's mercury was in flower and carpeting the Valley Wood floor. Judging by the well worn tracks leading from them the badger setts in the wood seemed to be quite active; good news. We continued along the valley over fields now full of sheep towards Beesby Wood. As we approached the air was heavy with the scent of bluebells and wild garlic. The garlic is now in flower and the bluebells are as good as I have ever seen them here. Wood anemones were still hanging on as well so the wood looks magnificent. The badger sett here is very large and very active and as we stood by it we watch a couple of tree creepers spiralling up neighbouring trees.
While the ladies returned via the Valley Wood, Brian and I completed the round walking passed Stock Furlong which is aso full of bluebells. The scrubby area adjacent to Stock Furlong, I am told, was rich in orchids last year: early purple, pyramidal and bee. I saw no sign as yet but will return shortly for a thorough look. There was an abundance of dandelions in flower, though and a good crop of cowslips. We continued down into the Wold Newton Valley under dramatic skies and were soon back at the car.
To view large, please click on an Image.