Our Friday walk on Upton Heath

Friday 8th April 2016

As it was Friday I did my grocery shopping before I took Max out today. And then I walked him over to Upton Heath. We walked up the Roman Road which means we had a lovely view over the heath as we headed up towards the Viewpoint.

Upton Heath

We walked from the Viewpoint down the hill and headed for Max’s favourite pond, where I threw his cone for him. And then we walked home via the lower heath, where I was amused to see the Exmoor Ponies standing in a line.

Three in a row

And that was about it. Apologies for the delays in posting. I seem to be all disorganised at the moment.

A year ago today

We went for a walk along the River Stour at Eye Bridge, near Wimborne.

Reflections at Eyebridge

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A sunny morning on Upton Heath

Monday 29th February 2016

Monday morning means that Max and I go over to Upton Heath for our walk. Unlike Saturday afternoon it was nice and sunny this morning. Here’s Max in the pond.

Max in the pond

And Max in the little pool by the boardwalk.

Max by the boardwalk

As you may be able to see I am still experimenting with fill-in flash, and am quite pleased with the results.

We also came across the Exmoor Ponies this morning. Initially I saw one standing and grazing at the side of the path and couldn’t work out where the other two were. Then I saw them: lying down doing a bit of sunbathing. Here’s the first of them…

Time for a rest

… and then the other.

Time for a rest (2)

And to finish, just an update on yesterday’s lunch for Dad’s 89th birthday. We had a nice lunch and a nice day, but I didn’t take any photos (it’s all a bit of a rush when I’m cooking). I gave Dad a new phone which he was pleased with. Now all I have to do is teach him how to use it!

A year ago today

Well, technically there wasn’t ‘a year ago today’, so instead I’ll share a photo from 1st March, when Max and I went over to a very grey Canford Heath.

Peeking through the grass

Clear blue skies this morning

Monday 15th February 2016

Now that our guests have gone home. Typical! Max and I took advantage of the situation by walking over to Upton Heath. Here he is at his favourite pond.

Cone time

Walking on round we met the Exmoor ponies, who seemed to be trying to avoid the mud.

The Exmoor Ponies were staying out of the mud

Max totally ignored them (he’s such a good boy now) and I was pleased when this one turned to pose for me as I went by.

Exmoor Pony

We got to the big puddle at the end of that stretch of path and Max wanted me to throw his cone. He wasn’t very pleased when another little dog tried to get in on the act.

Max keeps a wary eye on the little dog in case he's trying to steal his cone

I love his expression in that shot.

I think the fact that another dog might come along and steal his cone must have been preying on his mind, as he looks pretty serious in this photo too, taken at the boardwalk.

In the icy pool

Notice the ice still on that pond. After that we walked on home via Creekmoor Ponds where the cormorant was once again on the No Swimming notice. Today it was reflected in the water.

Reflected Cormorant

And that was it for our walk today. I hope you have enjoyed the photos.

A year ago today

Mud on Upton Heath.

A beautiful snowy scene is once again a muddy quagmire

A very wet walk

Wednesday 27th January 2016

As yet another storm passes over us (the remnants of the big storm that dumped all the snow on the east cost of the USA over the week-end), I got drenched taking Max for a walk this morning.

We had had a lot of rain overnight, and this morning it was still raining hard and blowing a gale. My plan was to kit up in full waterproofs and walk Max over to Upton Heath. That was until Jez decided she wanted to come. We were so surprised but were convinced she wouldn’t really want a walk in this, but after wandering around the drive she stood at the back of the car waiting to be let in. So I drove her and Max over to the heath. When we got there Jez soon thought twice about wanting to walk. I got her as far as the pine trees on the far side of the Roman Road, and then she was having no more of it and headed back to the car. To be honest, I didn’t blame her. I didn’t want to walk in those conditions either!

So after I dropped her back home I reverted to the original plan and walked Max back over to the heath. He didn’t care about the wind and the rain.

The rain didn't stop Max playing in the pond

In fact, he positively revelled in all of the puddles.

Max enjoyed the ever-expanding puddles

He was a bit of a soggy doggy though.

Drowned rat

And talking of being soggy, the Exmoor Ponies didn’t look as though they were enjoying it too much.

The Exmoor Ponies were very wet too

When we got to the Roman Road we found that it was flooded (fortunately you can walk along the raised bit to the left in the photo), although it wasn’t the worst we’ve ever seen it.

Flooding along the Roman Road

And after that we came on home via Creekmoor ponds, where I dunked Max in the ponds to wash him off. They were so deep though I didn’t need to throw a cone for him – even the shallow bit came up to the top of his shoulders. And can you believe that in all that weather we met up with several people to chat to on our walk – all other dog walkers of course! Meanwhile, back home, Jez had the right idea.

Jez shows us how to spend a wet, windy morning

Oh, and one other thing: I think I need a new waterproof coat. I was a bit damp in places when I got home.

A year ago today

We met this Foxy lady on a walk on Canford Heath.

She's certainly a Foxy lady

Autumn is coming to Upton Heath

Friday 18th September 2015

As usual on a Friday I did my grocery shopping first thing and then came home and took Max over to Upton Heath.

In the pine woods near Beechbank Avenue there are lots of fungi appearing.

A Russual I think

And I rather liked these, nestled up against an old tree stump, taken on the path heading towards the pond.

Nestled

At the pond, itself, we had a game of cone, although Max sometimes gets a bit confused and forgets he has to drop the cone if he wants me to throw it again.

You have to give the cone back if you want me to throw it, Max

After playing in the pond we walked on round the lower heath, and in the silver birch grove I found this lovely little Grisette…

Grisette

…these Amanita pantharinas, which had sadly been knocked over…

Amanita Pantharina

… and a nice little crop of Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria).

Fly Agaric

We walked on and met one of the Exmoor ponies.

Exmoor Pony

And Max had to play in one of his favourite puddles.

Max's muddy puddle looks very blue

I am amazed something so muddy can look so blue.

I was also hunting for orb weaver spiders today, but without any luck. I did find lots of Common Garden Spiders, though, like this one.

Common Garden Spider

And so we walked on round to Longmeadow Lane woods, beside the Roman Road, which were looking lovely in the sunlight.

A stream runs through it

And finally, here is a view back along the Roman Road, looking across the stream.

Looking along the Roman Road

It looks more like spring than the approach of autumn.

A year ago today

We went to Broadstone Rec where I took some photos of the fungi.

Fallen star

Max and I walk on Upton Heath

Friday 21st August 2015

Max and I did a slightly different walk on Upton Heath today. I drove him over there and we walked to his pond, then we headed up the big hill, but instead of taking the main track we skirted round the boggy area and took the path that runs between the main track and the Roman Road. Here’s Max in the heather.

Trotting through the heather

Eventually we turned left and took a path to join the main track, where I took this photo, looking up the hill.

Looking across Upton Heath

Once we joined the main track we turned back down the hill.

There are lots of Grayling butterflies around at the moment, but they are difficult to spot until you are on top of them, at which point they fly off. I did manage to get a photo of one, though.

Grayling Butterfly

We continued our walk on round the lower heath and met the Exmoor Ponies, one of whom who decided to follow us for a while.

Exmoor Pony

And then we headed back along the Roman Road to the car. Today, though, rather than following the Roman Road all the way back we cut through the woods along Longmeadow Lane, where I took this photo of Max in the stream.

Another stream, another cone

And that was about it for today.

A year ago today

Another shot of Max in the heather – this time on Canford Heath.

Max in the heather

Its an English Pointer sort of a day

Tuesday 14th April 2015

There are no photos from yesterday as I went and collected Irene in the morning (its about 90 mins each way). We did have a little walk around Creekmoor Ponds in the afternoon but I didn’t take any photos.

So onto Tueday, when I took Max out over Upton Heath in the morning before going out with Irene a bit later on. Our walk started as usual (collecting cones under the pine trees then playing in the pond). When we got to the lower Heath, however we met Lisa and her children with Cybill, and Dawn with Henry and Ariadne, the puppy.

Time for some treats

As you can see, Ariadne has grown (she’s the one in the middle). She’s only 14 weeks and is already getting really big. Here you can see her with Cybill, her half-sister.

Cybi and Adne

As I often do nowadays I had thrown down my treat bag to get her attention so that I could get some photos. I was in danger of losing it though.

Perhaps if I swallowed it whole

So I gave her my handbag instead.

I can investigate this better if I stand in this hole

It was only when she started wandering around with it and throwing it about that I realised my mobile phone was in there!

Ariadne

After that it was time for some treats.

Waiting patiently

Just a couple more of the dogs. Here’s Cybill.

Cybill

And here’s Henry.

Henry

And lastly for today, a photo of one of the Exmoor ponies who was standing in the sun.

Exmoor Pony

A year ago yesterday

We had had rather a lot of rain, and the stream along the Roman Road was a bit full.

Max was a bit surprised by how deep the stream was