Dog Walking in Autumn

The thing I've enjoyed most about having the Puppers in our lives now is the walks, they force you to get up and get outside and I almost always feel better for it.

It's such a lovely way to enjoy the passing of the seasons too, walking along in the woods and fields you have the time to notice the subtle changes from day to day.

I never used to be a fan of Autumn, it just used to mean the end of summer to me.  The finish of happy warmth and the descent into dismal wet and cold winter but in recent years I've come to appreciate it so much more.  There's a great deal of beauty to it for a start, the colours can be wonderful and of course it's just another excuse to knit/crochet all the warm things!

Autumn seems to be coming on in a very nice and gradual kind of way this year.  Slowly easing us from the lovely last blast of summer we enjoyed in late August into faded misty views and crisper mornings.

For weeks and weeks now the chestnuts have been falling from the trees around us as we walk through the woods up to the field each day.  At first the spiky husks were bright acid green and tightly closed.  Those that split open only gave out a few unripe and slender nuts with pale and soft bases.

As the weeks have passed through the spikes gradually have started to turn brown and finally last week, the cases were opening up on the trees, revealing the rich and plump nuts swelling within.  Over the weekend the nuts tumbled out and lay everywhere on the ground, some still wrapped in their protective prickles, many falling free and loose.

And as quickly as that, it seems the long process of bearing fruit has been realised.  The cases that are still on the trees are mostly empty now and the leaves, that managed to stayed green until the job had been done are now fading to yellow.  It's amazing how quickly things can move on when you watch for it.

The acorns seem to be working to the same schedule too.  Some of the trees are still clinging to their precious seeds, but most have now fallen to the ground, leaving the empty cups sitting amongst the leaves.

The berries are looking vibrant and wonderful at the moment, the hawthorn bushes are sagging under the weight of the berries they are holding and the rose hips are shining brightly in the sun too.  Most of the sloes have disappeared now though.  I wonder if they were picked or eaten? 

There were a few other finds on today's walk, this rather fantastic mushroom was hard to miss.  It's absolutely gigantic, I don't think I've seen anything so huge in real life before.  I had to add my hand in the shot to give you a sense of the scale of the beast.

There were a couple this rather meaty size and then there was another one, which I did see last week but seems to have gone now.  It was about half the size, but had a very sinister looking smooth alien-flesh looking grey top to it which I was hoping to show you.

There are some new sheep in one of the neighbouring fields that we sometimes walk around now.
Luckily Bertie is good and doesn't bark, although in truth, I don't think he really notices them much, the path we take is a little hidden from them.  They did come over to see me when I left the track to take the mushroom photo though, they seemed quite curious about what I might be up to.

You do get such a lovely quality of light in Autumn too.  The low sun on a crisp day can make everything look even more golden and beautiful.  It's very nice to go out and enjoy it.

S x