Four bridges and a tootle

Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. He was visiting the village of Melbourne today, and enjoyed its old world atmosphere (though he wouldn’t like to live there).

We had a grey and windy day here today. It was very windy at times, but not windy enough to do any noticeable damage.

I cycled round to the shop, had coffee with Margaret and Mrs Tootlepedal,while hoping that the clouds would lift. They didn’t.

As a result, watching the birds was a gloomy business.

The plum tree played host to a chaffinch . . .

. . . and a collared dove . . .

. . . while down below, the feeder kept fairly busy, but no bramblings or redpolls were to be seen today.

At lunchtime, a goldfinch seemed to be looking hopefully in the direction of the sun . . .

. . . and it did finally get a little brighter outside. This tempted me to go out for a walk in spite of the very strong wind. In search of walking novelty, I decided to try a walk which my friend Gavin had done not long ago. I needed a five mile drive to get to the start, and then I found myself walking back along the road towards Solwaybank which I had cycled along yesterday in the opposite direction.

This answered the question about the foresters. They were busy cutting down growing trees at the Kerr. The machine is amazing. It cuts a tree, picks it up at the same time, and in the twinkling of an eye, it has stripped off all the branches and sliced the tree into manageable logs.

It polished off three trees in the time that it took me to walk past it.

The road is just as nice to walk along as it is to cycle along . . .

. . . and you have a lot more time to look about when you are walking. The newly planted broad leaved trees in their plastic protectors are doing well . . .

. . . and I had never noticed this very acute bend in the Hall Burn before, although I have cycled past it many times. It can’t be long before an ox bow lake forms.

When I got to Barnglieshead, I turned off my cycling route and walked down the hill towards Tomshielburn. I was pleased to get some protection from the wind among the beech hedges.

I took the first of four pictures of bridges on my walk when I crossed the Hall Burn . . .

. . . and was a bit disappointed to find that an ugly gate was spoiling my picture. I think that it is there to stop sheep straying when the water is low.

It was a pleasant section of the walk, even on a grey and windy day, as you come out into the open after crossing the burn and get views right across the Solway to England. They didn’t lend themselves to being photographed today though, so I stuck to trees . . .

. . . and uncooperative sheep.

My next bridge was the bridge at Tomshielburn. Rather oddly, the bridge crosses the Glenzier Burn.

Another tree caught my eye . . .

. . . before I got onto the third and final leg of my triangular walk. This was a section of my familiar Canonbie cycle route, which I usually do in the opposite direction.

On this section, I found my third bridge at Ryehills . . .

. . . and my final bridge at the Kerr.

I was briefly battered by a very sharp little shower between bridges three and four, but mercifully it didn’t last, and I got back to the car warm and dry after four and a half brisk and enjoyable miles.

I found Mrs Tootlepedal busy making her second set of curtains when I got back.

There was no time to rest though, as there was tea to be drunk, music to be sorted and a liver, mushroom and sweet pepper stew to make and eat, before my friend Susan came to give me and two boxes of music a lift to Carlisle. There we met Jenny and Sue, the other members of our recorder group, and had a very worthwhile time playing a selection of music from the boxes. As we have well over 300 pieces of music in our collection, we will not be running short of things to play for a good while.

To cap an excellent, evening, Jenny provided us with some delicious biscuits to go with our after playing cup of tea. They came from a supermarket and at Susan’s suggestion, I have taken a photograph of the ingredients on the packet so that I can attempt to cook a home made version.

This post has been rather rushed as a result of all this activity.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch squeezing between the feeder and the pole.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “Four bridges and a tootle

  1. It’s quite remarkable that a relatively small piece of machinery is designed to do so many tasks. Do they remove the bark and stripped branches or leave them to decay on site?

  2. I love that shot of the potential ox bow lake. I’ve seen similar but they’re always much larger and wooded so I’ve never been able to get a photo like yours.
    I also liked the road with beech hedges. I never see anything like it here.
    I’ve seen the tree cutting machines at work, too. I hope they don’t have them in the Amazon.

  3. I enjoy seeing bridges, so this post is a bonus with so many of them. The portrait of the chaffinch in the plum tree is lovely. Like Laurie, I am curious about your replication of the biscuits and look forward to seeing how yours turn out.

  4. Ox bow lakes, that brings back very happy memories of studying geography at school. On the rare occasion I catch the train to Cardiff, part of the route follows the River Taff, where I can see the river in it’s “old age” stage, as we used to call it back then. The river is slowing down, as we all do (lol), and begins to meander. I can see, as the train speeds along, a couple of such ox bow lakes, and others close to formation. I have to say they are far from the size of lakes, but much bigger than a pond. It’s a pity the train goes so fast, because I would love to have a closer look. Maybe one day I can walk along the river. Those saw mill machines are incredible, we have seen the elimination of the forestry on the road route towards Merthyr, it is so sad, to see the trees disappear so quickly, when it seems so pointless. Simply widening a road that will ultimately make little difference to the flow of traffic, as more and more cars come onto the road each week. My bicycle woes continue, SwytchBike have advised the offending wheel will fit my single speed bike, so it’s up to me whether to ask for a refund or fit it to that bike? Not sure what to do as yet. Cheers.

    1. Road widening should have been abandoned by now. As you say, it generally just creates more problems. It is not often that you hear of someone complaining that trains are too quick!

      I hope that you get your Swytch problem sorted one way or the other.

  5. Modern day machinery can make short work of clearing a forest. I don’t know how well a machine like this one would work on steep hillsides, though. One roll and the operator is dead.

    That ox bow will make a nice lake someday, complete with island. Walking does allow one to see a lot more.

  6. Good to see all those bridges plus that ox bow lake …nearly created! Love your your header and the chaffinch sitting in your tree photos. A good walk to enjoy with lots of lovely trees to see even those wrapped in plastic!

      1. I am enamored of your dedication to your blog and your readers. I also understand the routine thing but I’m just barely getting my toe wet trying to figure out mine.

  7. I like your find of the acute bend in the Hall Burn that you never noticed before. Fast vs slow, one direction vs the other….there is always something else to discover. 🙂

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