Out to see some bluebells – Wednesday 15th May

Caught a train to Polegate with Steve to walk north along the Cycleway called the Cuckoo Trail, then west to Abbot’s Wood, wander about there until heading out to the west and around the edge of a small reservoir before arriving at Berwick station and pub.

We started at the bottom right, at Polegate station

We started at the bottom right, at Polegate station

The bluebells were great,

Bluebells under big oak trees

Bluebells under big oak trees

but so many other wildflowers out as well.

Bugle forms patches as its roots spread, but nothing like bluebells

Bugle forms patches as its roots spread, but nothing like bluebells

Hedge garlic beside the track

Hedge garlic beside the track

taller Ladies Smock growing through yellow celandine

taller Ladies Smock growing through yellow celandine

Stitchwort, each white petal so deeply divided that it looks like two petals

Stitchwort, each white petal so deeply divided that it looks like two petals

We managed to get lost twice in the wood, only finding out when we arrived at point X only to find it was point something very different from X.  A line of pylons helped us get re-orientated first time.  Second time we found ourselves in a picnic area that was on the map – several hundred yards from our planned destination, a pub.  But we found it – The Old Oak, and Harvey’s Best plus 1648 Brewery’s Bee-head.  1648 was the year that the order to behead Charles I was signed, and all their beers relate to that event.  This one has some honey in it.

Wood Anenome - not fully open as there was too little sunshine

Wood Anenome – not fully open as there was too little sunshine

Violets, with their heart-shaped leaves

Violets, with their heart-shaped leaves

Wood Spurge, a grand relative of a smaller softer garden weed that we have in profusion.

Wood Spurge, a grand relative of a smaller softer garden weed that we have in profusion.

Yellow Archangel - rather nettle-like fellow, but prettier and less vicious.

Yellow Archangel – rather nettle-like fellow, but prettier and less vicious.

Once into the open the wind became much more noticeable, and there were small waves splashing onto the concrete edge of Ardingly reservoir, and some swifts hunting insects as they swooped low over the water.

Soon the station and the Berwick Arms appeared, with half an hour before the train we decided on a beer (yes, I know, who’d have thought it).  This was from the Isfield Brewery, and a pale hoppy number called Straw Blonde. Excellent.

 

 

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