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New forest woodland in spring.

As I sit here watching the rain out of the window, I remind myself of a beautiful walk this morning in the early sun.

The forest was bathed in the early morning golden light, feeling fresh, green and bright the birds sung from the boughs.The song thrush out-sung the likes of gold crests, blackcaps and blue tits with its range of melodies only to be outdone by a distant cuckoo. Silhouettes of deer could be made out against the sun rising through the trees and mares led their foals into the safety of the cover to graze the patchwork forest floor. tree creepers bobbed up the side of the beech trees before disappearing out of sight beneath the lime green canopy while grey wagtails claimed their territory along the stream as the sun bounced off the flow of the high water after the recent rain.

Young conifers have new growth of bright green needles on the end of their branches as if Mother Gaia has added her early decorations to these "Christmas trees" as Southern wood ants beneath get an early morning start at keeping their nest in order.

The bracken is starting to unfurl and Hawthorn looks like fluffy powder puffs with their sweet smelling may flower in bloom. Tormentil, woodspurge and stitchwort embellish the ride verges and foxgloves are tall and waiting for the forthcoming warmer weather to burst into paint palettes of pinks and to become a buzz with pollinators and butterflies. But for now their beauty is in the anticipation of what's to come.

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