Ashclyst Forest is National Trust land on the Killerton estate a few miles east of Exeter. There are walks from 30 minutes, suitable for buggies, and various lengths up to about four hours.
I hadn’t been there for several years, but have many times in the past so I knew my way around. Just as well, the waymarked trails were totally confusing because paint had faded on posts and some signs pointed in more than one direction.
A wood is a wood perhaps, but we started off this way.
We’re well into spring now, everywhere is fresh and green.
I’m fairly sure these are different varieties of spurge
I’m a big fan of lichen and mosses.
Every so often there are glimpses through the hedge, under the shade of young leaves, to freshly ploughed fields.
At the lowest reaches of the woods, the distant sound of machinery could be heard, one of the culprits appeared eventually.
I’m usually driving some impossibly narrow lane when I see a tractor working, so this was a real treat for me, I even got a wave from what looked like father and young son.
There were wildflowers a plenty.
Even a baby dragon.
For those of you who like a bit of decay, last years beauty hasn’t quite faded away.
And still the views keep coming.
We’ve only walked a couple of miles, but with eyes wide open and camera ready, so it took nearly two hours.
The dogs can remember this as a mud wallow and were a bit put out, but no worries we’d brought plenty of water for them!
Now, the path is beginning to look a bit more civilised, I wonder what’s through the gate.
A fairy tale cottage, painted in regulation Killerton colour, what a lovely place to live.
Another fifteen minutes and our pootling walk was over. There are no facilities in Ashclyst, but Killerton House is a ten minute drive, combined with the woods it’s a lovely way to spend a day.
I’m walking with Jo for the first time in ages, are you?