Sunday, 22 January 2017

Watermead in Winter

Hello Lovelies,
thank you so much for the kind comments on my previous post.
This past week it did seem like I had jinxed myself by saying how much I liked winter in that post. With the day after day  greyness and payday seeming a long way off I began to start humming THIS tune and rather wishing January away somewhat.

There have been gloomy, muddy welly walks that were rather uninspiring. But then today we woke up to this ...a sunrise. How lovely.

I mustered all interested parties ( hubby and eldest) and we headed off somewhere new to us. Watermead Country Park.

By the time we arrived the cloud had gathered somewhat, but there were still beautiful reflections in the partly frozen lake. Eldest had come in a light jacket and after me made him add another layer ( hubbies waterproof) we set off at a brisk pace to ward off the cold.

We surprised a huge Heron, who took flight and glided gracefully over the misty lake.

I do love visiting somewhere new, oooh an interesting gate. Lets see what's on the other side.

A bird hide.

We went inside as there was nobody around :0)

It was a lovely view across the wetlands, though there did not seem to be much bird life today. Just a few Mallards.

Further along we found picnic areas and wooden sculptures.

and an even larger lake

With a strange shaped mound.

And some dinosaur bones

Of course these were just rather imaginative play structures.

This one representing a locally discovered species

At 16 eldest was not interested in climbing this frame, but he did get excited by the signs for a canoeing  trail we saw here.

Something to look forward to when the weather warms up.

Here we were walking beside the Grand Union Canal.

Were there was plenty of life on the narrow boats.

More wintry reflections.

We didn't have much idea where we were at this point but it didn't matter

Hello Mr Robin.

Eventually the path wound around so we were heading back in the direction of our start point. I loved the fresh green catkins and the red branches of the dogwood.

You are never far from water as the whole area used to be  a gravel quarry. It was converted into a park in the 1980's.
There were plenty of families out stretching their legs and exercising their dogs.

More catkins...such a bright red colour. I'm not sure I've ever seen any like this before. I think it could be Alder, but I'm not sure.

The park is just a few miles from the centre of Leicester, and there is a background hum of traffic, along with glimpses of homes and industry.

Happily it's not intrusive and  you can easily forget it's there when you came across lovely sights, like this beautiful wooden bridge.

we used it to cross the river.

And it led us back to the big lake.

The signs had said the lake is called "King Lear's Lake" so we guessed this was a scene from Shakespeare's  play of the same name.

I've since done a bit of internet research ( because I do like to understand the reason for such things) and  THIS site had the best explanation.

King Lear’s Lake has been named after the legend of King Lear, who ruled Britain in the 8th century. On his death he was buried in a chamber under the River Soar - possibly close to this lake! The statues, built on a platform in the lake, show the final scene from Shakespeare’s play of King Lear.

Hubby noticed the new shoots of the irises at the waters edge.

As the sun was shining again we took the opportunity for a rest on this bench.

We are still eating Christmas cake kindly given to us by sister in law. It's soooo good. I'll be sad when it's all gone.

I loved the way the sunlight was shimmering on the water as we sat looking back towards the "floating" statues.

Some hopeful ducks appeared but sadly I had forgotten birdseed today. I think I should leave some in my rucksack all the time in winter.

Oooh, some stepping stones.

Got to be done :0)

I'm often lagging behind taking pictures.

but the menfolk seen happy to wait.

Eldest amusing himself breaking the thin ice.

After a couple of hours and about 4 miles we were back at the car park.

It was time to go home and make the Sunday roast.

I really enjoyed this watery world, with it's reflected sunlight and birdlife.

Happily it's not too far from home and I'm hoping we can come back to see the difference the changing seasons makes.

I hope you will "join us"
Jacquie x


  1. I do enjoy your walks and so lovely to see catkins already. Not sure I have seen red ones before either. Watermead Country Park looks like a wonderful place to explore in any season.

  2. What a beautiful walk! I love all of the different sculptures, it is nice to have different things to see when you are walking isn't it.

  3. I loved going along on the whole walk but my two favorites are the Swans.. and the canal boats! I'm obsessed with them and wish very badly to see the interiors of them and mostly I'd love to stay on one and go adventuring on one. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  4. Lovely walk. Christmas cake looks delicious.

  5. What a fantastic place, how lovely that old gravel pits have been turned into somewhere so natural for people (and wildlife) to enjoy. I love that the lake has been called King Lear Lake as well, it conjures up all sorts of images. CJ xx

  6. What a lovely walk, thick freezing fog here to day, but still went out.. looking at the catkins makes me happy as Spring is on its way.. the red ones could be Hazel.
    Amanda xx

  7. Another great place to visit! I've added it to my list for next time we are in that area. Thanks again for going to the trouble of sharing your lovely photos. Vicki in the East Riding

  8. That looks like a great place to walk. We were out on Minninglow in the mist.

  9. Another Wonderful Magical Walk and History Lesson.Loved the photo's.We have a Huge Heron who tries to steal next doors fish lol,they are so graceful and interesting to look at.muddy welly walks with the dogs in St.Agnes,but today was sooooo mild and warm,can't believe it's January.My Big Birthday on Wednesday.Huggles.xx

  10. You find the best places for winter walks. Thanks for taking us along. Have a great day!.x

  11. Me gustan muchos todas las fotos de los sitios por donde paseas. Vivo en una gran ciudad, Barcelona, y es preciosa, pero me gustaría pasear por esos sitios tan bonitos por donde tu vas.


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