Saturday, 6 February 2010

Visit to Bolam Lake

This morning, G and I decided that we wanted to walk somewhere different, so we went off to Bolam Lake. This used to be part of the grounds of Bolam Hall but now belongs to Northumberland County Council and is available for all to enjoy. Usually there are plenty of people walking, picnicing or even canoeing on the lake, but it was really lovely today because we nearly had the place to ourselves and there were no noisy children, so we could hear the birds uninterrupted!

Bolam Hall was built about 1800, on the site of the village of Bolam, which disappeared after the Great Plague. The lake was made by the then owners and many interesting trees were planted, some of which are still to be seen.
Having parked in a road-side car park, we walked round the end of the lake and along most of the other side, towards the Visitor Centre. We passed this view of the lake.

Unfortunately, the swans, various varieties of duck and the seagulls were feeding too far away, off the end of the island. Even when I went right in on the photo, they could not be seen, but there were a great crowd of them, all making use of an area that was ice-free. A little further along we came to this leaning tree.

I loved the line and filigree nature of it, only spoilt by the detritis that was set in the ice underneath it.

When we got to the Visitor Centre we looked at the plan of the site and decided to follow a tack round through the trees and rond the edge of the site, which passes an iron age fort. I am glad that we did because on the way we passed this monster.

All through the woods, and particularly near the lake, where there are a number of rhododendrons, there was much damage caused by the weight of the snow. A lot of work had already been done, especially where paths had been blocked, but there is much more to do. I expect that this monster had reached this state before the snow, probably by degrees over the last few years, with a gale taking it to its current stage. I wonder how many years it has seen.

Sadly, we failed to find the iron age fort but we completed our walk back at our car park and returned home feeling much refreshed for the hour in the fresh air.


mollygolver said...

I loved going for that virtual walk with you. The pictures are lovely. Gosh that poor old tree's taken a battering. One of my pet hates is when people just dump garbage everywhere as it seems in that beautiful lake. Shame on them!

Frances said...

Thank you, Withy, for taking us along for that walk. I would not otherwise have even known of the existance of Bolam Lake.

I love your use of the word "filagree." I really loved that photo of the trees whose branches hand near the lake.

Great to have a good walk outdoors in such lovely scenery. I guess that my walk around my city neighborhood this afternoon, that covered a bit over a mile was full of visual interest, but not too much of that interest was supplied by Mother Nature.


Pam said...

Such a sense of history in this post Withy, with haunting yet picturesque scenery, so very different to the brash, drought-weary suburban streets where I am.Thanks for the escape.x

Dave Hunt said...

Feel like we were with you, don't worry, we were not stalking, must have been someone else...
Your walk reminds me that this time of year is that gap between winter and spring, rather nice to think that nature is soon to stretch its legs and get ready for the year ahead.