Over recent weeks the weather has been wet and surprisingly cold. So when the forecast improved for a day the only thing to do was to attempt to visit all my favourite neighbourhood woods. Photograph them all in one day!
No one would want to do this by car so a long walk plan was created.
It started at Park Wood. This is one of the best bluebell woods in Somerset. It was the perfect place to begin the walk as the early morning sun catches the corner of the wood where the best flowers can be found.
Park wood done, it was time for a quick dash up to King’s Castle Wood.
Coppicing on the south edge of the wood has created an interesting series of open patches full of bluebells.
Two woods ticked off, next was Beryl Wood and Biddle Combe.
This long strip of woodland covers a narrow valley with very steep sides. Here the wild garlic mixes with the bluebells. The combination of white and blue flowers is beautiful.
A few miles completed and the weight of tripod was getting too much. So that was dropped off at home. Then after a quick cup of tea and a breakfast bar it was time to head up hill towards Milton.
On the way this patch of white flowers in the hedgerow forced me to stop.
Surrounding Arthur’s Point there are two woods that blend into one. Round Wood and Folly Wood. In Round Wood the wild garlic was starting to appear. A narrow trail runs along the edge of the wood from the Lime Kilns provides the best views of the woodland floor.
Dropping down the fields towards the village of Wookey Hole there were lots of spring flowers. The most obvious being the buttercups.
But the best are hidden under the edge of Folly Wood. The beautiful early purple orchid loves this north east facing slope.
Next was Wookey Hole, the hope was to see the dippers dashing up and dow the river, but they were too secretive. The last time I managed to photograph these was nearly 20 years ago. Developments along the river may have persuaded them to move on?
However, the grassy slopes of the cave car park are a great place to watch rabbits.
The rabbits are fun, but it was time to move on. Next up were the woods around Wattles Hill.
These hidden little woods are connected by a network of footpaths.
Currently, this wood is probably my favourite.
It was here that my first butterfly of the year appeared. Of course, it had to be a speckled wood.
Heading out via the wooden style across the open fields. Here I spent some time photographing buzzards high in the sky, but those pictures were rubbish!
Watching the bees on the dandelions almost made up for this.
Leaving the fields and onto Titlands Lane, with sign to the Blic Ootpath that had just enjoyed.
This joins the busy main road, but also opened the chance to spot a dipper from Littley Bridge. Again another disappointment.
Around the corner the rugby pitch was covered in buttercups. Does no one play rugby anymore?
Heading back into Wells along the old railway line that is now a cycling and walking path. There had been several glimpses of holly blue butterflies along the walk, but they were frustratingly brief. Finally, one stood still long enough to be photographed.
Another glimpse of a rabbit. This must be a brave bunny as this path is very popular with dog walkers.
On reaching home my walk had been 14 miles long and taken most of the day. But a wonderful day!