The extra bits...(Under construction).

Friday, 23 January 2015

Nercwys forest .... again!....

     Well the stubborn streak within me appears not to becoming any thinner folks, in fact I do believe that I'm actually becoming even more Mule like these days. So yesterday, after just one rest day for my poor knackered knees I set off around Nercwys forest once more but more of that in a tad.

     First thing yesterday though I wanted to replace the not so functional bird feeders that I mentioned in my previous post with the one that I er ahem haggled such a reasonable bargain on. The reason why it was such a bargain was that one of its four perches were missing so this morning remembering that I had a knackered Niger seed feeder in the shed so repairs were made, the feeder filled n hung and sparrows were seen feeding on it already, although the little buggers flew off before I managed to get a picture!

The bright green perch donated by the Niger seed feeder.

     But apart from a few humdrum tasks....the clipping of not walked enough doggie nails, chopping kindling, sorting out what's for tea (battered Haddock and homemade wedges with some mixed greens) and a myriad of phone calls including organising a physiotherapist appointment for me knees, letting the grind know I'll be back off the sick come Sunday and bollocking the bank for another cock up on me contents insurance nothing more was accomplished in the morning.

      I was a tad more prepared for the walk this time, only a tad as I still have not found my walking boots in the pile of boxes that hold most of my possessions but some 'out there' gear was to be found....

The fir cones were collected on the walk...

     So I was able to ..... ditch the 'not fit for purpose' coat, replacing it with my long lost 'Jack Pyke' shooting coat which also had my 'Glacier gloves' in it's pockets (toasty), also able to ditch the jeans for a more comfortable pair of army surplus trousers, my 'Harris Tweed' cap was found, and to finally cap it off (sorry) a knapsack was also found. Oh yes nearly forgot...I even took me little 'Fujifilm' camera too.

      According to the display in 'flat cap car' the temperature was a positively barmy 0.5 of a degree as we trundled into the car park at Nercys forest once again. Perhaps not cold enough to freeze the balls of a brass monkey but it felt bloody close to it! But at least this time I was far better equipped than on our last jaunt, both clothing wise and mentally. 

     So we set off up the main path and already a difference in Nelly was apparent, she was more confident this time and scouted much further ahead than the last but she always happily came back to me when called. I have admit to have been very apprehensive about letting her off the lead as I believe that she has had none to little walking in her two short years and certainly has not had this type of 'off the beaten track' exercise before. She's just been a kennel dog for the sole purpose of breeding. I find this a tad sad that she's not been able to stretch her stumpy little legs before now.

     Bear on the other hand was no different than usual and you would swear that there had been no gap in her 'out there' exploits. Within just five bloody minutes she was to be found up to her old tricks.....

Look Dad.....Mud

     Where as Nelly, bless her stumpy legs, skirts around the slightest hint of water but unfortunately, despite her good intentions and because of her stumpy ickle legs her underside still got absolutely plastered in crap by the end of the walk.

Nelly taking the dry way...

     The woods were certainly cold and unusually the temperature didn't feel any warmer once in the cover of the trees. I put this down to the mist that was lurking around, not heavy but perhaps enough to keep us chilled. Another thing that I attributed to the weak mist was the silence. The only sound to be heard was my heavy footfall on the frozen snow and the scampering of the terrible twosome. I have not known Nercys to be this quite before as there is usually some bird song to be heard, but even the trees were silent with no wind to carry their voices as they watched us pass by, have to admit that it was a more than a little bit eerie and added a certain nervousness to the walk.

Silent trail...

      For a change I was happy to pass from the cover of the trees and head back towards the carpark along the main trail once more. Even with some distance to go we'd already doubled the previous walk and my knees had only just started really slowing me down with pain and dull aches. As we made our way along the path we came across a possible reason for the silence of the trees...



      I know that Nercwys forest is a managed forest, planted in the sixties replacing open moorland with non-native trees but I was surprised to see how much timber was felled this time. The trail was edged for over half a mile with these ten foot stacks of trees! Perhaps I'm being whimsical, but perhaps the forest was in mourning for such a loss? 

Something about wood that makes me touch it...

     As we approached the car park my pace had slowed down to a crawl yet even so I was still enjoying the walk and watching the capers of Bear n Nelly who'd taken the opportunity of the slower pace to play hide and seek with one another and the first bird call was to be heard, the shrill alarm call of a Blackbird they'd managed to spring....

Your it!
     
     We finally got home as the light was failing but as knackered as I was there were still chores to be done...Light the fire, get tea on the go but firstly...

Nelly becomes suddenly camera shy!

      ....bath these two little filthy buggers and untangle a mass of debris from Bears ears! I hope that you've enjoyed this as much as we enjoyed the walk, 'till the next time take care,

John
     

23 comments:

  1. I LOVED this walk with you and the girls, John :o) I'm with you on the forest being in shock for it's lost trees. Woods always feel alive and aware to me. Loved the scruffy Bear at the end- a very familiar picture here too :o) Have a lovely weekend and keep on getting out there.

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  2. Thank you CT, even though this a 'recent' forest in the scheme of things it has a life force flowing through it, I long to walk through ancient woodland once again as these are truly alive.

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  3. Gorgeous photos John. I spent the morning at work then came home at lunchtime with my poorly son. I did enjoy working from home though much prefer lying on sofa to work, than sitting at a desk dealing with pesky parents :) Have a great weekend.
    Twiggy

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    1. Thank you Twiggy, those pesky parents can be a pain.....though no parents no kids. Glad you enjoyed working from home for the change...I need a day job methinks!

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  4. That's a lot of wood there what ya think they are going to do with it?

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    1. It's all pine PP, there is a lumber yard only a few miles away and this is where this timber will probably end up. A lot of it will be used for pallets I imagine as for the rest I have no idea. I think some investigative work may well be order.

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  5. John - Forgive those of us who are geographically challenged. The pictures are beautiful - where are they from?

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    1. Hi TB, the pictures are from Nercys forest which just nestles on the side of the Clwydian range in North East Wales, about twelve or so miles from the border with England. The range is a favorite spot of mine and the area I walk (limp) has been classed as an area of outstanding national beauty. More information may be found here if you're so inclined ...... http://www.visitclwydianrange.co.uk/menu/about-the-area/

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    2. Thanks John! It looks beautiful. I am enough of a history nerd to be excited to see it is near Offa's Dyke and even more excited to see there is a trail that can be walked. That is the sort of thing - history, natural beauty, outdoors exercise - that belongs on a bucket list.

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    3. Yes it used to be on my bucket list to walk this trail, but at nearly two hundred miles my knees, at the moment, make it doubtful but you cannot read the future so who knows?

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  6. My knees were hurting too after going on that long walk with you!! Described the photographs perfectly. Though I admit to NEVER WANTING TO EVER WALK IN THE TREES - I'd have been absolutely terrified!!!!

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    1. Hi Rach thank you m'dear. A walk under these trees is different every time...sometimes bright, full of life and very welcoming, other times quite and thought proving and just sometimes the forest will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up....especially when the light is going and the trees start whispering to each other ;)

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  7. Lovely pictures, we have woods close to us but don't partake of them until the grand dogs are down. Should visit more as we love them. Two of them are springers and look like that after walks but they are hosed down outside, dried then have aqua fleeces put on before allowed back in!

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    1. Oh it was far, far too cold to hose the little buggers down although I was tempted DC. What type of woods are they that are close to you?

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    2. Pine mainly but also native species. Take care in your few days away.

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    3. Hi DC, not sure how the Away post popped up, was posted way back last May and I'm definitely not as low as when that was published or am I off anywhere soon so you'll just have to put up with me I'm afraid ;)! think I've sorted it now. Sounds like the forests by you have a nice mix.

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  8. The photo of all the logs is amazing, but also rather sad I think.

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    1. Yes it was was a bitter sweet picture, reminds me though that this is a man made forest and not truly natural to the area. Far better if the moorland once redundant was allowed to grow its own forest in time...the resulting environment would have been far more diverse and conducive to native wildlife I think.

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  9. What a lovely walk you all had, when I had a dog , we used to go to the woods every day, its a great place to think. What are you doing with the pinecones?

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  10. I asked in my previous comment what you do with the fir cones, I have just read your previous post for the fire.

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    1. Hello SL and welcome... Also hoping to use some cones in garden mulching if I collect enough. It's having a dog really encouraged me to get 'out there' and there is something special about walking woodland trails.

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