I spent the start of the day walking round all of the hides which was a rare treat! But it would have definitely felt wrong to sit inside all day when there was snow to be enjoyed! The light was constantly changing as the sun rose and went in and out of the clouds. At one point the sky was tinged with pink while other times the sky and the snow glowed blue.
One thing I particularly enjoy after a night following snowfall is tracking what animals have been up and about. The main footprint tracks around were rabbit, fox, deer, bird and human (it is interesting to see where some visitors wander off to!)
Most of the lakes had patches of ice but none were completely frozen over. As I walked through the woods there was a constant dripping sound as the snow started to melt in the morning sun.
The ‘Jim’ snowman that appeared on the bench behind the Centre has some resemblance to Jim’s face; however the 4 legs are a little bit worrying!
Down along the Docken’s path between Ellingham Lake and the Centre I found this pair of jolly snowmen just chilling out on a bench by the lake!
Walking across to Goosander Hide I disturbed a flock of redwing feeding amongst the leaf litter along the Docken’s Water path. The snowscape dotted with ponds on the approach to Goosander Hide was very picturesque.
Out of Goosander Hide there were large numbers of wildfowl close to the shore along the edge of the spit; although they are difficult to make out in this photo.
I decided to investigate the flooded path up to Lapwing Hide as there were a number of footprints leading up there which gave me false reassurance that it might be passable. However I was soon stopped in my tracks as the path turned into an ice rink!
Outside of Lapwing Hide there were hundreds of shoveler and on the walk back I saw a fox running off in to the distance; it’s hard to stay stealthy crunching through the ice!
RESERVE UPDATE: Tern Hide and car park remain closed due to ice. All other hides and the Education Centre and car park are open. The Education Centre car park is very icy and the paths over to Goosander and Lapwing are also icy; so take care!