I snatched a few hours between jobs yesterday and I had the need for trees! So I took myself off to recce the Mark Ash walk. Taking a walk along the track of Knightwood inclosure, I suddenly realised I was charging along with a mind full of "busy!" Until a dragonfly caught my attention who was resting on the bracken. I stopped to look as I told my brain to shut up and took a deep breath, the dragonfly took flight knowing he had done his job of slowing me down. I continued, the walk was somewhat steadier as I headed up the hill to see my old friend, the Eagle oak.
Hidden amongst yews he disguises himself from prying eyes and only welcomes the ones who slow up to notice his magnificence! This little space in the woodland is always quiet and stoic. Saying goodbye to this old friend, I made my way back to the inclosure track where my view was now a plantation of conifers, so uniform and upright and such a contrast to the scattered, wild ancient woodland.
But it really wasn't long before I was surrounded by the trees my ancestors would have walked amongst in the atmospheric Mark ash Wood.
Weaving between the ancient beech, you cannot do this in a hurry. Every tree has a twist, a turn, a scar and a story and I wanted to know them all! My mind was no longer busy with schedules and demands, but old tales of the woodland as I turned into the younger woodland of Wooson Hill.
This has a gentle and small opening in the trees that pulls you in. So just for a moment I sat on a log and was gifted with a low flying goshawk through the trees.
As time and agenda started to creep back into my mind I got on the move once more, now into Holiday Hills amongst ageing Douglas fir, a fallow herd and more ancient beech.
I quick-stepped the home run to have a moment to pass the time of day with the Knightwood Oak. Sadly, so surrounded with its offsprings now, not as visible as it once was, but I had met some just as impressive, if not more so characters on my walk. 🌳
If you love trees, this is the walk for you!