After being stuck inside yesterday thanks to bad weather I decided to go for a ride today. My original plan was to ride up to Sherwood Pines, do a lap, and then ride back but I then found out that the trails are closed thanks to a rally going on. As it would have been a 40 mile round trip I decided it wasn't worth it without the fun of the trails in the middle!
Next plan was potentially riding down to Loughborough, but again, decided against that one thanks to there being a few potentially hairy bits on the roads, so a new plan was formed. Ride round the corner to the canal and then follow the path as long as I can. Did some scouting on google maps and could see a path going all the way to the M1, and some potentially cheeky paths extending beyond that. So half 8 this morning I set off, lunch and my camera in my bag.
Unfortunately couldn't get as far as I had hoped as there was a big no cycling sign, but I think I'd ridden (no cycle computer!) about 12-13 miles by this point so turned back, and followed the path into the nature reserve, rather than the canal.
The twitcher in me emerged as I found the bird hide, a few evil looks as I attempted to quietly wheel my bike instead (didn't want anyone stealing it!). Weather depending, I might ride over to the other nature reserve tomorrow morning as I had such a good time this morning.
And now I've worked out how to get photos at the right size, here's some of my better pictures from the ride:
This is where I joined the canal path, at Castle Marina
Here's a common tern, I watched him (or her) for a while, lots of diving down and splashing but didn't see it catch anything!
Always used to keep an eye out for herons at the local park with my Grandad when I was little, so its always nice to see one now - saw quite a few today at various points (although none actively fishing in the water), here is one of them:
Whilst in the bird hide with the angry man there were a few squirrels terrorising the bird feeders, here's one of those too:
Flowers are something I like taking pictures of, perhaps because they're pretty, and tend to keep still! So some poppies I stumbled across:
And just in case you didn't believe there was a bike involved:
If you want to see the rest of the pictures (well the best 34) from today you can see them in my flickr gallery - http://www.flickr.com/photos/becky_kirk43/sets/72157626935375126/