We are working our way slowly southwards towards Uxbridge. But though we are in the Greater London Area, it is surprising how much quiet rural countryside there is to be enjoyed, even though busy roads and railway lines are only a stone’s throw away.
Huddled together to keep out the cold
We are currently moored just below Widewater Lock, which as the name implies, is situated on a wider part of the Grand Union Canal. With the River Colne often running into it and with extensive Lakes on either side, it is difficult at times to distinguish the proper course of the waterway.
A carpet of Greater Stitchwort
But this countryside is beautiful, even on the wet days in the cold north breeze that has been consistently harassing us recently.
There we were, deep in the jungle of deepest Hertfordshire
But there have been sunny intervals and today especially, though the wind is still from the same primary point, it is not as vigorous and the Sun is shining brightly, showering its welcome warmth upon us. For the first time in many days I have not had to light my fire at all.
A Pochard with disabled wing unfortunately. Due to there being too much white bread in its diet apparently
The lakes, old quarries apparently, make ideal wildlife habitats which encourage walkers and anglers alike to use them and the woodland that surrounds the waterways has been so well managed as to inspire a myriad of flora as well as fauna to live there. It’s a naturalist’s wonderland.
The Comma Butterfly
Janis and I have made full use of the facilities and have walked around the boundaries of all the lakes on our way southwards. We have seen Woodpeckers and Red Kites in abundance as well as Pochards, Great Crested Grebes, Tufted Ducks, Common Terns and Mallard of course, as well as many families of all the common geese species. It‘s been a wonderful experience for me.
Travelling in mother’s slipstream
We have also seen a fine specimen of a Carp that an angler landed. It was certainly the largest fresh water fish I’ve seen I think and after all the photographs had been recorded, I’m happy to say that it was restored into the lake. It swam off contentedly and didn’t seem to have suffered from its brief moments of celebrity status in the alien world.
A young angler with contented look on his face
Picture of a Fox in the distance foraging in a ploughed field
Tomorrow we journey the two miles down to Uxbridge where I shall look after the fleet of little ships while Janis returns to Newark on business and to see old friends.