It's a drab,wet day here today - so different from yesterday.
We decided to go for a walk after lunch whilst the sun was shining, so on went the walking boots and into my little green rucksack went a couple of apples, bottle of water, binoculars and my camera.
We walked up the lane and across the fields to Marrington Dingle. (Well no, actually we rambled around a bit and then hiked about a mile down the main road before dropping down into the Dingle.) The farm track drops down through forest, which is part of the Marrington Estate, to the River Camlad, which meanders through a beautiful little valley. (I think the Camlad is the only river that rises in Shropshire and flows into Wales)
I stopped on the bridge over the river to admire the view and spotted a stunning Grey Wagtail on a rock. It is actually grey and yellow and, thankfully, I could watch it for quite a while through my binoculars, as it was feeding on the insects over the river. A flash of turquoise caught my eye as a Kingfisher flew up the river towards me, turned, and zig-zagged away, skimming over the water. Wow!! They are such a fabulous irridescent colour it's hard to believe they are a british bird.
We walked on along the valley amongst the pink campion and wild comfrey. The purple and black Damsel flies flitted around the nettles and Orange Tip butterflies fluttered from flower to flower.
A Grey Heron flew up from the river, flapping slowly away with its long legs dangling and a large creamy brown buzzard circled above us making its characteristic mewing sound.
What a little oasis of beauty in that little river valley.
The rest of the walk was through Whittery Woods with its leafy oak trees and then on to the farmland back to Old Churchstoke and back home. About 6 miles, I think. My little feet were aching by the time I returned but well worth the effort!
I hope you like the photos - they never do it justice and of course the birds were too quick for me to snap!!