Sunday, 17 April 2011

Lakeland holiday Day 1 part 1

And so we begin our first holiday of the year to the lake district. We went to our usual campsite (castle-rigg hall) because it has magnificent views over derwentwater but not with our usual caravan, because we bought a new one! its much biggher than our last one, but does mean that me and my brother are now sleeping outside in tents because of the lack of beds.

Because its been so hot and dry recently we expected good things of the weather and on day one it was a beautiful cloudless sky that greeted us. As a result we decided to go for a walk up the very near mountain of Walla Crag which is only small, but has spectacualr views.

As we walked from the campsite, down the country lane to it I spotted a host of common garden birds, such as this sparrow, which was sat on one of the decorative bushes that lines the campsite. its funny because the lake district is one of the few places in england where sparrows are considered scarce!

Also there was this male blackbird that was digging for worms along the side of the road who was quite bold, allowing me to get quite close to it, until he eventually flew off.

there was also a dunnock in the shrubbery surrounding the base of the mountain, where there was a small stream.

And there was also a chiffchaf, doing a good impression of a a flycatcher, zipping from the tree, to ccatch a fly, to return to the tree.

On the dry stone wall there was a stunning pattern made from the yellow lichens, that engulfed entire areas of rock. Its really quite pretty, except for the lumpy grey ones that bulge out here and there.

At the top you could here skylarks singing, but really the view as the best bit. This photo was taken looking away from derwentwater and basenthwaite and towards something else which I'm not sure what it is.

Amongst the heather and billberries behind the view there was an unusual bumble bee, which i have not identified, but which was pretty stunning. in the only picture I managed, it was hiding behind a leaf.

there was also a mixed tit flock flitting between the trees accompained by some willow warblers. this coal tit was the only one who stopped for his photo to be taken!

The way back down is quite steep,and rather annoying. However, along the way there were a large number of wildflowers that were coming into blossom:

wood anenome


And woodland violet

when we reached the bottom, the dense birch woodland pattered out into open beech woodland, with some birch. There was also a lot more leaflitter, rather than a floor full off bracken and brambles. Then I heard a loud bird call and wondered if it might be a blackbird. As it so happens the culprit was not a blackbird but a blackcap, which is my first this year and the first male I have seen for some 3 years. I also managed a record shot, although it will go no further than that becuase it is rubbish.

carrying on through the woods and not on the lakeside prooved to be a good choice as a treecreeper showed up, although it scurried up the tree too quickly for to slyly approach it with the camera, so the photos are more looking up to the bird, rather than eye level with it.

A bit further on my dad spotted a wren singing on a pile of brash, so I crept up behind a tree and managed to take a few photos, although they are not great due to the fact that it was quite some distance away. However, a bit of sly creeping and the bird being distracted by singing allowed me to get much closer than i would have were it not singing!

A bit further on we spotted this ting on the path, or rather my dad did, although how I missed it is beyond me! What I am unsure of is...what is it. Obviously its about the right colour for a red spider mite, only a lot bigger! It has the body profile of a tick, so maybe its a red spider tick or something similar. If anyone knows anything about this mysterious animal, please down withold your knowledge. At my guess it is some kind of arachnid, due to its eight leggedness and that I dont know any other animals with eight legs.

As we entered the final part of our wooded walk, through the very interesting flooded forest habitat, apparently in severe danger I spotted my second blackcap of the day, in a slightly better position than the one before it.

So now, As I end this part of the day, we leave the woodland at the side of the lake to walk alongside the lake and then to go on a rowing boat around the lake to explore. Also, as a side note please keep with the posting process! its going to be a long ride for me due to the number of photos I have taken and their respectable sizes!

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