Thursday, March 21, 2013

Walking Yorkshire - Golden Acre Park to Paul's Pond

It has been a while since I did any walking and photography, but being short of gainful employment I got off my backside today and went to lovely Golden Acre Park just outside posh Bramhope in Leeds' merchant banker belt.

There wasn't so much in the way of flowers to be seen at the moment, but the lake was thronged with waterfowl and the woodland hide at Adel Dam Nature Reserve was a great spot for watching the woodland birds packing the feeding stations.

Black headed gulls
The gulls were whirling overhead in screaming packs as small children alternately threw bread to the eager diners and then wailed in fear as angry geese tore like honking feathered missiles through the packs of ducks, Coots and Moorhens.

A feeding frenzy of waterfowl
Male Tufted Duck

Gulls on the partially frozen lake

After watching the water birds for a while I pressed on to the wooded Adel Dam Nature Reserve, and was happily ensconced in the hide at the feeding stations when my camera, which claimed to be on two thirds charge earlier in the morning, suddenly black-screened and went on strike.

Great and Blue Tits feeding

I don't know what the park keepers have put out in this mesh box, but the Tits loved it.  There was a tree full of them queuing up to take turns.

Female Chaffinch

And at this point the camera gave up.  I however did not, and had a nice stroll around the rest of the park, through the Arboretum, Black Hill Plantation, Cherry Orchard and gardens and then pushed on through Breary Marsh, a SSSI next door to Golden Acre. A little further on to Paul's Pond and then proceeding through a gate I found myself surrounding by closely shorn grass and people wearing plus-fours.  I had wandered in to the land of golfists at Cookridge Hall, time to turn for home then.

A nice morning's wander, four and a half miles at no great pace.  Looking at the weather forecast, any walking this coming weekend will require snow shoes and Ranulph Fiennes.

All that and 6 WeightWatchers activity ProPoints to boot, that calls for a large glass of red please landlord.
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