Scrapbook ~ Wildlife walks throughout the year
Saturday 10th December 2011
Wythiam - Groombridge - Harrison's Rocks - Motts Mill - Wythiam
Many apologies for the
lack of postings recently, I've been spending all of my spare time helping to
1st Crawley Scouts - a brand new Scout group in Crawley which
after closing down about 6 years ago has been newly reformed and recreated. We
now have a brand-new-looking old hut (the one I went to as a boy) and 10 keen
Scouts who are getting trained in all of the skills that have helped this
old-timer to enjoy nature all these years without being found dead in a ditch
So far, since the end of September the boys (girls are allowed in Scouts too but
so far it's just boys) have been on a camp and three hikes, one of which was a
competition hike. They also get up to all sorts of scrapes in the hut once a
week and make a hell of a lot of noise while they're doing it too. All of this,
apart from the shouting and screaming, takes a vast amount of organisation and
red tape which can leave you really wiped out. But now at last it's all starting
to flow along a bit easier - spreadsheets and computers are taking care of some
of it and once again I have time to document our own meanderings, wanderings and
wonderings. I've made a
couple of little films of the Scouts adventures you might like to see
Gill and I have also
been out and about on targeted birding jaunts. One was to see the Short-eared
owls at Waltham Brooks. These beautiful winter migrants have turned up in
astonishing numbers this year and can be found right across Sussex.
So today we set off on the
Sportster through East Grinstead and out to little Wythiam near the Kent
Border. I've ordered new suspension for the bike this week as the old ones just
can't handle the state of the roads anymore. Nor can my back, nor Gill's bum!
Also the roads were icy so we had to take it very easy indeed.
Anyway, we picked a perfect day for walking: sunny but chilly with a sky of blue
and cirrus clouds all over. We did mess up a bit though: we (Gill) took far too
long getting up this morning (it's just so dark) and we took far too long to
journey there, so by the time we got through
Harrison's Rocks the light was going. As the temperature was also plummeting
we took the easy option of a march along the "Ladies Mile" back to our start
point via country road. Not an option we like to use much but it's far better
than getting lost in a field, in the dark, in the frost. Next week we'll have
new suspension - can't wait!
Hartfield church spire seen from near Wythiam.
Twice today we had to cross the National Cycle Track - too boring for walking
The newly-planted woodland.
Please be very careful with the rocks. Don't touch them if you don't need to.
Take the time to read
countryside code for yourself and please stick to it at all times.