Sunday, 15 February 2009

Blue skies and thin sunshine today, so we drove over to Aller Brook nature reserve, and followed the tidal path beside the River Teign. The water flowed lazily between the blond rushes...
The path is known as the Templar Way, and runs all the way to Haytor on the moor. Trees form arches over the path, and I noticed this honeysuckle had broken into leaf
The views down the river are lovely, with the rolling hills and the scattered villages. We had to turn back though, as the tide wasnt low enough to go any further, so drove on to Hackney Marsh
It was lovely and peaceful, and the sunshine was quite warm, the marsh was alive with birdsong,
In the ditches the sharp green spears of reeds were poking through
The trees that lined the path were knotty with buds
Further along the path, beside the river are these ruins cloaked in a mantle of ivy, this was Hackney Hamlet, where the `Lightermen` or bargemen, used to live, they moved the Ballclay from the Stover canal down to Teignmouth to be shipped all over the world. I find this tiny hamlet clinging to the side of the river rather enchanting, imagining night falling, with a net of stars shining down on the dark cold river, which gently lapped the shore, and the lights shining from cottage windows, but the reality was apparently very different, as they worked very hard, and were hard drinking men, who frequented the Passage House Inn a few yards from the Hamlet.
This is a wonderful place to birdwatch, we saw a Heron or `Old Frank` slowly fly over, his neck well pulled in, and a snowy white Egret standing on the river beach, watching the noisey gulls and ducks squabbling.
Slipped and squelched back along the muddy path across the marsh, noting this nice stump
And this dead tree, which had been used as a Woodpeckers hotel

We drove on to Jetty Marsh, where the remains of Stover canal are
You can see where the canal basin was
And where the lock gates were

And where they tied up the barges
I love all these ghosts from the past.....

2 comments:

Pieceful Afternoon said...

Thanks for another wonderful trip.

Ramblings From Spain said...

A beautiful peaceful journey alongside the river, with so many nice pics, glad the sun was out for you too x