The sand quarries on the hills are a favourite haunt. Small lakes, pioneering rough scrub, and Gorsy slopes, are framed by mature woodland in a sea of green fields dotted with church topped villages.
Of course my romantic eye chooses to ignore the semi industrial elements, but not the signs warning me of impending doom. The silt pools ARE dangerous, and you really have to watch what you're doing. There's something a little concerning about a 6 foot sign warning you of quicksand that has sunk up to its neck.
It's these pools and the new growth on the silt that brings the deer to graze. I often see Muntjac, but there is also a herd of Fallow deer. I'm impressed how such a large animal in good number remain unseen throughout the day. I can spend hours following the tracks trough the woods and across the sands, it's fun to see what they've been up to.
This is the wallow hole that they visit almost daily. In its base is the perfect imprint of a large deer that has been lying on its side. The forest floor when disturbed sends up clouds of mosquitoes, and a coating of mud helps prevent bites. I was tempted to try it, but instead opted for higher mozzy free ground...
Up on the hill I settled for a while to watch over the surrounding land, hoping to spot some wildlife. The Buzzard screeching a warning overhead, combined with my lack of patience, meant I had no luck.
I knew the deer were out there somewhere in the mist comforted trees. Maybe it wasn't a lack of patience but more my rumbling tummy that sent me on my way.
Down in the mature woodland I managed to forage some Sweet Chestnuts while I was waiting for the water to boil for my coffee.