Out & About …

… on the North York Moors, or wherever I happen to be.

Category: Newton Wood

  • Life finds a way

    Life finds a way

    Am I on an arboreal theme this week? A toppled tree trunk, adorned with vibrant green moss and saprophytic reddish-brown fungi. The presence of the latter suggests that the tree has been dead for some time. But is it truly lifeless? Fungi, the decomposers in this woodland ecosystem, toil away, breaking down deceased trees and…

  • Deep in Newton Wood—in search of Cold Well

    Deep in Newton Wood—in search of Cold Well

    On a rather damp morning, likely the dampest of this winter, I seized the opportunity to explore something that has lingered in my thoughts for quite some time. Attempting to do so last summer proved futile due to the impenetrable undergrowth. Within Newton Wood lies a feature labelled as “Cold Well” on the 1st edition…

  • Confronting Storm Gerrit and hunting Nessie in Newton Wood

    Confronting Storm Gerrit and hunting Nessie in Newton Wood

    On a day that could only be described as dire, I ventured out to confront the tempestuous forces of Storm Gerrit. With a strategic approach, I sought refuge primarily within the protective confines of Newton Woods. In my last posting, but one, I mentioned ‘pareidolia’. This is the tendency to see images of animals, faces,…

  • Oak boughs in a wild dance

    Oak boughs in a wild dance

    The snow persists giving an almost monochrome image of Newton Wood, a predominately oak woodland. The sombre boughs stretch out endlessly, weaving intricate angles and twists, forming a chaotic yet captivating network that reaches both upward and downward. It is a common belief that oak woodland is the original vegetation of much of lowland Britain…

  • Shig-shags

    Shig-shags

    While cutting back the bracken in Newton Wood today, I was taken by surprise when I stumbled upon what seemed to be miniature apples. Of course, these were not genuine apples, but rather galls created by insects as excrescences. And as it dawned on me that they were attached to a small oak sapling instead…

  • The Delicate Greggles of Newton Wood

    The Delicate Greggles of Newton Wood

    I make no apologies for yet another posting featuring the greggles of Newton Wood. In a mere couple of weeks, they will have surpassed their peak, and the woods will be stripped of their intoxicating hue of violet blue. Thomas Hardy employed the term “greggles” in his book, The Mayor of Casterbridge, ingeniously portraying the…

  • From Sores to Toothaches: remedies with Wild Garlic

    From Sores to Toothaches: remedies with Wild Garlic

    Another dreich morning with poor visibility. So my eyes were drawn to the abundance of flowers blooming in Newton Woods. Ramsons, also known as Wild Garlic, are plentiful in the damper areas of the wood. Personally, I find their display equally impressive as the Bluebells, although some may dislike their scent. Throughout history, plants from…

  • Newton Wood’s Bluebells

    Newton Wood’s Bluebells

    May is an enchanting month, and one of the most exhilarating things about it is the appearance of bluebells in Newton Wood. These stunning blue flowers are a breathtaking sight and attract photographers from all over Teesside. While the majority of bluebells are blue, this clump of white ones regularly bloom. These may be “albino”…

  • “Oh, to be in England, now that April’s there”

    “Oh, to be in England, now that April’s there”

    Spring has sprung! The blackthorn is blossoming, trees buds are unfurling, and daffodils and primroses are painting the landscape in vibrant hues. And the best part? I spotted my first bluebell today! But keep your wellies on. April isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Showers abound, and the woods and fields are riddled with deep pools…

  • The graceful and capricious roe deer

    The graceful and capricious roe deer

    I’ve had many close encounters with roe deer over the years. Many times have I disturbed them on my woodland runs and walks, just catching a glimpse as their bouncing white rumps quickly disappeared through the trees. Occasionally I’ve been lucky to get a closer look when the breeze has been in the right direction…