Another recent Country Park walk with Ted.

I suppose that many people will associate country parks with rolling-hills and agriculture. There isn’t much of that type of landscape though within many miles of where I live, so I’m glad that former coal-pit closures have led to otherwise derelict land being reclaimed to give residents of our town somewhere within easy travelling distance to breathe.

Clock Face Country Park is on the edge of St Helens on land reclaimed from the former Clock Face colliery. This duck pond is one of my favourite places to visit when I’m out with Ted, the family dog – a Japanese Spitz as you will remember if you’ve read yesterday’s post. The pond is within 50 yards – or metres if you prefer – of the car park. On a clear day, or a clearer day than the day of this walk, you can see the cooling towers of the former Fidlers Ferry power station.

I know that they used to discharge huge volumes of steam, making their own clouds, but I shall miss their presence when they get demolished – probably this year.

Enough of the talking, let’s start walking. There are several paths around the park – one of which leads to the neighbouring Maybole Country Park and then to Whittle Woods. The Dream Country park and the Bold Country park are each less than a mile away. The paths are usually fairly mud-free, even after rain and are wide enough, with only gentle inclines, to offer wheelchair access. There are benches and picnic tables dotted around the park for those whose legs get quickly tired.

The paths are lined by trees that create a sense of distance from a nearby main road that runs parallel with the path at this point. The tree-planting includes lots of native species and, at this time there is usually lots of autumn colour.

I see that someone else is up ahead, also walking a dog. I thought that her bright coat colour would add to a photo, so I took this shot.

I was drawn to these oak leaves in all their warm autumn finery.

We’re now at the highest point of the park and, just ahead, you see an information board with a map and details of the park and of what you should be able to see from that viewpoint on a clear day. To its left, seen from here, or straight ahead if you’re facing the information board, is a toposcope. This shows the points of the compass etched on a brass plate with the names of some of the places in the distance.

Ted’s waiting for me to catch up. He’s very good and never wanders out of my sight. Taking pity on an old man.

Well, that didn’t take long – about 45 minutes and we’re back at the duck pond, though on the other side from where we started.

I’m being self-indulgent, but I love looking at the reeds in the morning sunshine.

A quick walk around the pond and up that slope and we’ll be back at the car park in a matter of minutes.

I have another country park for you to join us walking tomorrow. I hope to see you then.

The duck pond – it had to be.

EXIF data were: I used my Fujifilm X-T4 26 MP cropped sensor mirrorless camera with a Fujinon 23 mm f/2 lens. The shutter speed was 1/320 seconds @ f/2 and 23 mm. The ISO was 160.

Author: writingandphotography0531

I am a retired local government officer. At that time, I was an IT manager and had associated responsibilities for training. I have previously been involved, in various organisations, with aspects of industrial training and management development. My hobby is photography and, until recently, hillwalking in Snowdonia. I have just written my first novel, Persephone and the Photographer, published as a Kindle eBook.

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