Close to us is Snelsmore Common Country Park. It’s a nature reserve with a mixture of woodland and lowland heath, and it’s an all round great place to go with a picnic or the build dens in the woods.
We visited last week with the intention of looking for toadstools. When we visited around this time a few years ago there were hundred of fly agaric, the red toadstools with white spots (the ones that fairies sit on!) Unfortunately we didn’t find any toadstools, but we did find blackberries in abundance and now have a freezer full of them.
When maintenance work is carried out on the woodland, the cut branches are left intentionally to benefit insects and wildlife, and for making dens. There are loads of little hideouts made all around the woods. Some go for the red Indian tipi method of leaning large sticks against eachother, while others use a horizontal branch of a tree as the support for their den.
And of course, it wouldn’t be a wood without a tree swing or two over a perilous drop.
We were very lucky. It had rained all morning and for about three days previously, but the sun finally made an appearance and it was beautiful.