Not every week allows the opportunity for a good walk on a sunny day but this week came up trumps, allowing a cool stroll through one of my favourite local woods on a hot day. Like many woods it has a varied history and this one features the remnants of ornamental driveways, still defined with rows of rhododendron. The colours were vibrant and the bees enthusiastically doing their thing, so I thought I’d use the opportunity to try to capture them in action.
Out of all the animals to capture the imagination of young children, it’s the large mammals. Lions, hippos, tigers, bears, elephants and others feature highly in children’s books are when a visit to the zoo is mentioned, they come at the top of the request list. Happily there’s a space not far out of London where the big animals roam free (well relatively, depending on their level of ferocity). We’d been to Whipsnade once before, which isn’t too far from us, but this was our first visit with Tilly. Offering soft play and a playground as well as an amazing array of animals, we were keen to get stuck in.
It’s surprisingly little known that a family of snow leopards reside at the Lakeland Wildlife Oasis, just off the A6 near Milnthorpe, not far from Kendal in Cumbria. As we were spending part of our summer holiday just up the road, it sounded like a great trip out for toddler Tilly.
A recent visit by family gave me a rare opportunity to go for a good walk in the nearby countryside. It was a hot day so I opted for a largely wooded route, although the path skirts around fields at times, offering fine views over the valley. I hardly saw another soul on the walk with it being a weekday afternoon but I did have a chance encounter with someone quite unexpected: a fox.
We’ve been great fans of the Gruffalo trails at our local Forestry Commission site in Wendover Woods, marking the book’s 15th anniversary last year. The trails have recently been updated for the new season with a new theme based around the Superworm book. We took the opportunity over the Easter holidays to check it out.
Colder, wetter weather is limiting outdoor activities with the little ones but get the boots out and there’s simple fun to be had by squelching down a muddy path. I took Tilly out on a rare sunny afternoon to explore our nearby countryside and give her some much-needed walking practice.