A Wet Woodland Ramble

Hanging On!
Clinging On!

This was another of those shorter, local walks that I enjoy just as much as the longer and more challenging treks. It is, in any event, something that I have been forced into recently because my ankles have been giving me grief again – those of you who have been following me will know that I had some problems a year or two back and I underwent some hospital tests and X-rays after which the specialist told me I have arthritis. This is partly the result of a sporting injury when I was in my teens and had to have my right ankle pinned together. It is almost as if my ankle joints, feeling mistreated, have realised that they have been carrying me around for 70 years now and have decided to have a little protest πŸ™‚ !

So for now, it is shorter walks and longer bike rides, but I’m hoping to try a ‘proper’ walk again this week or next week to test it……or beat it into submission πŸ™‚ !

Bark Patterns
Beautiful Bark

Anyway, this walk took in some lovely woodland, my regular stamping ground for many years, and another section of trailway. The day was somewhat grey and damp but it was a day when the yellows and oranges really seemed to pop out of the gloom, partly aided by the layer of damp that had settled on everything.

The two pictures above are of the same tree, with just the odd determined leaf or two hanging on for dear life against all the elements. What caught my eye, apart from that lovely orange colour, was the beautifully textured and lined bark.

Around the Pond
Golds and oranges around a woodland pond

In the woods are some ponds, relics from its brick making past. The brickworks has long since disappeared but the ponds provide a bit of interest and some lovely reflections, lined as they are with those beautiful autumn grasses.

Tones and textures of a fallen leaf on a bed of lichen and moss

Of course, as always, fallen leaves lie on the banks of the ponds, wonderfully textured with droplets of water and resting on a vibrant green carpet of lichen and moss. I never could resist autumn leaves as nature’s palette is so varied.

Beside the Stream
The way through the woods

These are old woodlands with much lichen as well as the warmer coloured foliage on trees and ground. Walking here makes me want to get my oil paints out again to try to capture that beauty on canvas, which in many ways is more satisfying than the quick fix of capturing it in camera.

Brightness on a Grey Day
Brightness on a grey day
At Leaf Level
Leaf level

Along the trailway section, there are reminders of the past everywhere. The distinctive concrete fence posts that the railways always use to keep people off the lines, walls that have stood for years, baseplates and bolts that once held the rails to the sleepers, discarded clinker, and of course the sleepers themselves.

Sleepers and Sticks
Sleepers and sticks

The sleepers above have been used to create a garage or workshop and are held together with strips of ageing timber. Since these are next to the trailway, I wonder if they once carried trains along that line. As a photographer, I have trouble resisting taking pictures of any old and decaying timber. There are so many textures and tones that makes them so photogenic although that is not the only attraction; I just think there is so much history in these old timbers and if they could talk, it would be fascinating to hear them tell their life stories from young sapling to workshop wall, to follow the life story of a railway sleeper. It would be like listening to a centenarian with wrinkled and lined face telling their story to a rapt audience.

Sleepers and Twigs
Delicate and strong

The thing that caught my eye in the second pictures was that beautifully ornate tracery of twisted, dead foliage growing from its base. It is the delicate and fragile against the solid and strong, both having come to the end of their original purpose in life. Their day is past but they still retain a beauty for those who will see it.

I know, I’m odd πŸ™‚ , but I get excited by these things and there was a lot on this walk to excite me. I’m sure that if people see me taking pictures, they must wonder what on earth I find so fascinating in what most see as mundane. I guess it is just the way I am made, although I must say that I actually try to cultivate this sense of childlike wonder because it makes you realise what a wonderful world we live in, and it opens up so much beauty and interest.

I didn’t actually take my camera on this walk so all these pictures were taking using my phone and processed using Snapseed, which is an easy editing tool. I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I enjoyed taking them.

In case you missed my previous post, also about derelict things πŸ™‚ , it is here – Wrecks of Poole Harbour.

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time,
Your friend The Dorset Rambler

If you would like to contact me,Β my email address is terry.yarrow@gmail.com – comments and feedback are always welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.


  1. I absolutly love reading all about your walks as I love the Dorset countryside and all it’s beauty. Thank you.

  2. Not odd at all. πŸ™‚ You see beauty in the ordinary and the every day; you pay attention to what is around you. Those are wonderful qualities that bring beautiful photos into being (especially the one of the tree trunk). πŸ™‚

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