A lovely walk from Burley this morning, the landscape so lush with the unseasonably wet weather, but the ponies don't seem to be complaining and doing well on the textured landscape complemented by the heavy, grey skies.
Golfers adapted their aim past the ponies on the course and the high bracken lined my path. Where dragonflies and damselflies rested. At the peak of the hill before my descent, I stopped for a while to take in the amazing views of the walk ahead of me. Steadily heading down to the pond at the foot of the hill meadow brown, gatekeeper and silver studded blue butterflies kept me company and a circling buzzard called from the thermals.
Pond skaters rippled the surface of the pond and as my path meandered through marshland the smell of bog myrtle filled the air.
The landscape quickly changed again as I headed onto the sandy track of the old railway line, a favourite place to spot reptiles on the warm, south-facing banks, but today ponies were enjoying the warmth, snoozing in their herds staying close to the resting foals. As the banks drop away from the old track, it becomes tree lined and inviting with its sheltering, green canopy leading you right to a lovely cup of tea at Holmsley station tearoom. This is the old railway station and still has a lot of the old features and offering a well deserved cuppa before heading back and taking in the far fetching views over Holmsley heath which is peppered with gorse and foxgloves amongst the bracken where I spotted a Dartford warbler and a resting Kestrel. Fallows bounced through the landscape in the distance which gave me a good excuse to stop and watch after heading uphill and back into Burley.
If you would like to join me for this walk at the end of the month go to the events page to find more details.