Rain then some sunshine

Sunday 10th September to Saturday 16th September 2017

Yes, we went over to Upton Heath for our walk on Sunday and we got wet again! Although it wasn’t as bad as yesterday my walking boots decided enough was enough and let water, so I came home with wet feet. Teddy wasn’t particularly happy about the state of affairs either.

Wet again! Teddy's not very happy

Monday was a good day – we didn’t get wet! And on Tuesday we actually had sunshine for our walk on Canford Heath. Here is Teddy, backlit by the sun.

Backlit on Canford Heath

And letting me know that all this photo-taking malarkey can get a bit boring.

Well this is boring!

When we do get sunshine a lot of Red Admiral butterflies are taking advantage, and we saw this lovely one as we headed down towards Knighton Heath.

Red Admiral Butterfly

I also spotted quite a large fungi and was trying to get a photo of it, but Teddy thought he’d take a leaf our of Max’s book and photobomb the shot.

Teddy takes a leaf out of Max's book and learns to photobomb

We continued on round and Teddy met a young Cocker Spaniel for the second time and they had a really good play. After which, of course, Teddy had to find the nearest puddle in which to cool down.

Teddy poses for Tongue out Tuesday

I particularly like this photo of him.

Time to cool down in a puddle

Needless to say he got out covered in mud!

Tuesday would have been Jezebel’s 10th birthday, so the day was tinged with sadness. But she loved cake, so in her honour I made a chocolate marble cake in the afternoon which Chris and I have been enjoying. This photo of Jez was taken on her birthday last year.

Jez on her 9th Birthday

On Wednesday I went to Dad’s in the morning as usual. I am pleased to say he has suffered no ill effects as a result of his fall last week, other than a very sore thumb where he cut it. In the afternoon I took Teddy over to Canford Heath, although I didn’t take any photos as once again it looked as though it could tip down with rain at any minute. After our walk we dropped round to Pat’s to take her her birthday presents: she will be 97 on Thursday.

On Thursday Teddy and I headed out to Badbury Rings for our walk. We didn’t get that far, though, as Teddy decided to whine and bark in the back of the car. Instead I called into Kingston Lacy which was closer.

Unfortunately the main part of the Woodland Walk is closed.

No Woodland Walk for us today

We did manage to do one small loop in the woods though, and then headed back past the house to the gardens. This view of the house was taken as we were walking back from the Woodland Walk.

Kingston Lacy House

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before but in the woods in one part of the gardens they are using pigs to clear the undergrowth. They’ve always been too far away for me to get a photo before, but today they were by the fence. Here is the big one (I think it might be a Gloucester Old Spot, but I can’t actually see any spots so I might be wrong).

Clearing the undergrowth in the gardens the natural way

And here is one of the Kunekunes.

This Kunekune is hoping to be fed a few apples

He came over to the fence as there is a shoot there. You can buy apples and feed the pigs. Sadly I didn’t have 50p on me for the apples, so he had to go hungry.

Over in the Kitchen Garden the dahlias are looking lovely.

Dahlia

There was supposed to be an orchid flowering there somewhere but I couldn’t find it. I did find the little autumnal scene in one of the outhouses though.

Autumn's harvest in the Kitchen Garden

And one final shot of the house as we walked back to the car.

Kingston Lacy House

On Friday we walked over Upton Heath again and although I took the camera we spent time walking round with a dog walker so I didn’t take any photos. I did take the camera when we went on Saturday though, despite the forecast of rain. There was a very misty and moody view over Poole Harbour, looking towards Arne.

A misty view across the heath

And yes, we got wet, but not very. Just a couple of fairly light showers. So I’ll leave you with a panorma of the heath and hope that the forecast is right and we will not have a few days without rain.

Panorma across Upton Heath

Another sunny walk in the New Forest

Sunday 8th June 2014

It was another lovely, warm sunny day today. Just as last Sunday, Chris and Max came for lunch. After lunch we all piled in the car, including Dad, and drove out into the New Forest. We went to a new location today: Wooton Coppice, near Bashley. The car park I chose was quite busy as there was a little stream there, and lots of families were picnicking while the children played in the water. We left Dad in the car, watching the picnickers, and took the dogs off into the Coppice for their walk. It didn’t start too well for Jez: Max found another bit of the stream and he and Jez went in. Unfortunately it was deeper than Jez was anticipating and she found herself having to swim – and Jez doesn’t do swimming! Anyway, here are Chris, Jez and Max walking along the cycle track in the Coppice.

Walking in Wooton Coopice, New Forest

There were lots of flowers growing along the track, including these irises.

Wild Irises

Most of the wild irises you see are yellow, so it made a nice change to see these. There were also quite a lot of what are think are Common Spotted Orchids. Here’s one…

Common Spotted Orchid

… and here’s another.

Common Spotted Orchid

While we were stopped waiting for one of the dogs at one point I was very surprised to see a Red Admiral butterfly land on Chris’ baseball hat.

Red Admiral on Chris' baseball cap

As I said, it was quite hot, so we were glad there was lots of water around for the dogs, including this little stream that Max found.

Max has found a new stream

Some of the water was quite boggy though, so it was good that we passed the same stream on the way back to the car so that the dogs could wash the mud off.

The dogs cool down in the stream

We walked on back to the car and then drove back towards Bashley, stopping in a pub on the way for a quick drink.

Chris went home at about 6pm, in time for him to see the start of the Grand Prix, which was exciting.

I’ve got one more photo for you today, which I took when I had to post a letter for Dad in the evening. It is of the local pet shop – and never did a shop have a more inappropriate name.

'Happy' Pets

If I thought Barry at our local Post Office was miserable, he’s got nothing on the man who runs this shop. He doesn’t want to talk to his customers, has never even said Hello to Jez, and never smiles. Which is a shame as his wife, who does the dog grooming from the back of the shop, is a lovely friendly lady who clearly loves dogs. It’s a shop I will try to avoid in future if I can – I like the shops I visit to be customer friendly.

A year ago today

It was a lovely sunny day and we went for a walk on Upton Heath. I’m starting to miss the heath.

Crossing the Roman Road onto the Heath

Sunflowers and butterflies at the Country Park

Tuesday 6th August 2013

Well, a sunflower at any rate. But more of that later.

Max and I went to Upton Country Park for our walk this morning. If I thought the car park was busy when I arrived (a bright sunny morning in the school holidays), it was packed by the time we left. Poor Max got ‘attacked’ by an ex-racing Greyhound in the Woodland Walk, but to be fair they did have it on a short lead and it was muzzled, so it couldn’t do any damage. Unfortunately we had to pass them on a narrow bit of path, and the greyhound lunged at Max. I was quite proud that he didn’t try and retaliate. I think he was a bit bemused by it all. He even ignored the cows later on, even though they were lying right next to the fence.

Taking it easy

At the stream, though, after a while he refused to give up his stick (he normally drops in on the bank for me), so we had a bit of a tug of war with it.

Tug!

We were lucky enough to see a couple of butterflies that stayed still long enough for me to photograph them today. Firstly this Speckled Wood Butterfly…

This Speckled Wood Butterfly kindly posed for me

And then this rather magnificent Red Admiral.

Red Admiral sunning itself

Head on

Back to the sunflower – it is obviously self-set, growing all by itself down by the pond.

Sunflower

It was a lovely splash of colour though.

Finally, I was surprised to see quite a few Canada Geese on the shoreline. This is not particularly surprising in itself, as we are normally inundated with them and they often take over whole fields. The reason I was surprised was because this was the first group I’ve seen all year as far as I can remember. All of the geese I’ve seen down in Parkstone Bay and Poole Park have been the smaller Brent Geese. So, here they are. I think those are godwits behind them.

Canda Geese