(CLICK ON A PIC AND IT WILL GO BIG)
I (and James for that matter) have been hold heartedly pee'd off for pretty much the whole of January with this grey drab flat weather. We've been struggling to even see blue sky never mind the sun! On the days when there has been some vitamin D bouncing round both of us have been busy elsewhere. Today didn't start any different. During the week it was looking grey for today while nice bright sunshine midweek. Grrr.
Accompanied by an EFRS new friend Adrian I set off for a walk through Hamwall, grey as it comes. I was confident of no rain but not much else. James had other duties.
It was pleasant enough with little wind. We shot a few pics
Tree Creeper and Long Tailed Tit
From VP2 there were two pairs of Male and Female Marsh Harriers far off
A very obliging Chaffinch
Never far from a Great White Egret at Hamwall
It was great to see the Great Crested Grebes starting to do a few furtive courtship dances
It was starting to look the sky was clearing and turning blue, no wind and definitely no rain. My phone was beeping, James was on his way..................
We met up at Tor hide where things started kicking. Adrian broke out the chocolate Hobnobs and all was well.
We decided to check out the new Avalon Hide. We've been admiring it from afar for some time. It looks like a Sauna. We had visions of a swimming pool on top and steamy windows. The RSPB wardens lounging inside as us poor twitchers are freezing outside. How the other half lives ha!
We marched to the new obelisk..............
James at the gates of the mystical tower. What would the inside behold
Quit nice actually
Who am I kidding its bloody brilliant! It's huge with loads of space behind. Light and airy where you can have a walk around. Nice circular front that you can all see out. Around the base is a wall of screens with well sighted holes. James spent some time below while Adrian and I went up top.
Never been so close to the water tower.
A view for all you Tor-ists out there
This is the screen. If you want to see an alternative take on the hide have a look at our other site manualfocusuk.com
This place is going to be great. The Marsh Harriers are nice and close unlike from the track where they are well out of reach for your average 400mm. Here there must have been four or five individuals.
Back of the net!
And what about a Peregrine passing through
Could it get better? Damn right, how about a Bittern making a close fly by!
James caught it on the way back
We were nicely settled down in there, plenty of comings and goings both in and outside of the hide but all were accommodated with lots of standing room behind those seated. I turned to Adrian for a couple more Hobnobs........... He'd eaten them all!! Hmm not the way to get invited back on an EFRS jaunt. That was the only let down of the day. HUMPH! They were CHOCOLATE Hobnobs as well!!
So well done RSPB Hamwall. Cracking hide and bear in mind I'm no lover of hides. Sitting in a shed in a field is not my idea of fun but this is different. It's well thought out, comfy with the prevailing wind behind you. Nice one boys the EFRS give its official stamp of approval and will be spending a lot more time in it.
And this Robin likes it to.