Sunday, 31 October 2010

A grey walk around Stanmer

A grey and drizzly walk around Stanmer park started at the Lodge gate cottages, one of which had really got into the spirit of Halloween.
This beech tree struck me as being particularly majestic.
An obliging robin in Stanmer church yard...
This is the lane that drops down from the upper lodge gates and into Stamner village...
This view from the top of Stammer park shows the impact of the new football stadium.
Even in the dull conditions this maple shone through...
The last descent into Stanmer...
This scabious was a reminder of the summer...
Stanmer House, now restored, albiet with some hideous gates and fences not visible in this picture.
This view is looking north up towards Ditchling Beacon. On this day, I liked the quiet and unassuming landscape. I could look at a field like this for hours; I love all the subtle colours.
Sparring cows...This was the one bit of drama on an otherwise flat walk.

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Hunting the Cissbury Ousels

A sunny Sunday morning in October found me heading up to Cissbury ring from the car park in Findon valley. Apart from a good walk and grand downland views, I was hoping to fine some migrating ring ousels that I had heard had been spotted within the ramparts of Cissbury.
As I climbed up to the ramparts of the Iron Age hill fort the low morning sun picked out the dew drops on the grass.
Cissbury is one of the most impressive hillforts in Sussex and the ditch and bank on the north of the site are substantial. Inside the ramparts, the western end of the fort is pockmarked with the remains of prehistoric flint mines.
Not the best picture of a small copper butterfly, but it is the only one I have seen this year.
The views were stunning this morning. Here the power station at Shoreham can be seen with the coast disappearing towards Beachy Head.
Through the east gateway of Cissbury, Wolstonbury Hill can be seen.
The view over No Mans Land with Chanctonbury Ring on the far left.
The view to the north west.
The views this morning were wonderful with the clear conditions allowing distant landmarks to be identified. In the middle of the picture in the far distance is the Spire of Chichester cathedral and beyond that the Spinnaker Tower at Portsmouth. And yes, I did see and hear one ring ousel as it flew overhead and disappeared into a hawthorn bush.