Look to the light

January walks are all about timing. Things can appear dreary, muddy, dank and generally unappealing but with the right weather conditions the quality of the light can make everything right. Clear, bright, frosty days are definitely the best for a Kent hike at this time of year and despite all the low cloud and rain this month, there have been quite a few such days falling at the weekend. Well, a couple anyway. We’ve tried to make the most of it and walks at Cudham, One Tree Hill, Ide Hill, Hosey, Downe (despite the new fences) and Petts Wood have come up trumps. With a hard frost, like the one we found at One Tree Hill last Sunday, a lot of the mud freezes, which helps considerably. Such days can be good for a spot of casual birdwatching too with small birds often so keen to feed that they care less for human presence – I’ve enjoyed up-close views of goldcrest, nuthatch, coal tit and brambling this winter. But it’s a mysterious affair; sometimes there are no birds at all.

  • Beech trees, winter
  • cloudy day Kent
  • Winter sun on track
  • Downe walk in winter
  • Frosty path

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