A Walk with a Purpose

Over the last couple of years I’ve spoken to a couple of people who had seen otters in the river Wharfe, I’ve never seen a wild otter so I’ve been meaning to walk that way ever since. There was also mention of a kingfisher in the same area, something else I’ve never seen. With my new getting fit regime I decided to catch a bus to the little nature reserve where they had been seen and walk back.

It’s only a very small nature reserve but I was quite impressed, there were good paths and most importantly lots of benches, perfect for sitting with a flask of coffee and enjoying the view…

I liked the way they had made the low fencing too, it’s like a rustic version of wattle fencing.

I can’t have been walking along by the river for more than five minutes when a duck by the far bank gave a warning quack and scurried across the water to the other side. I looked over to see what had startled it and spotted the otters! There were two of them swimming along, sometimes bobbing their heads up but easy to follow underwater by the wake behind them. I watched them for several minutes before they disappeared under a bush overhanging the water. It was quite exciting to see them, I just enjoyed the moment rather than trying to take a photo as I knew with my phone they wouldn’t have been clear at all.

I walked to the end of the reserve and then looped back past a pond with a rather dirty swan, he needs a good preen but he did stand in the classic swan pose for me!

After a coffee on the bench, hoping in vain that the otters would return, I walked along the road to a footpath which skirts round Burley in Wharfedale village, following my nose until I found the stepping stones…

…which I didn’t attempt to cross! There’s been a long running campaign to have a footbridge here which would make a great circular walk. A little further along is the weir which was built to serve what I have since discovered is called a goit, it’s a waterway about the width of a narrow canal, which provided water for the mills in the village.

After a short detour into the village for a sticky bun I returned to the riverside path heading home. I spent quite a few minutes here as there were dozens of swallows, skimming the river for insects. It was first time this year I’d seen swallows, they migrate to Africa for the winter so it’s always a special moment when you see they have returned. I tried to take a photo but you can just make out the occasional spot!

From here it was just a walk across the fields and the golf course to home. Altogether I walked about 6.5 miles and I knew it the next day! I still haven’t seen a kingfisher so I will just have to return another day.

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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11 Responses to A Walk with a Purpose

  1. endrickwater says:

    We have at least one kingfisher on our river (or water, as it’s known in these parts) and rumour has it there are (or were, anyway) otters. Also salmon — there’s a salmon ladder on one section, but there is also the most stunning leap in another. Sounds like your walk was really wonderful — following your nose leads to all sorts of interesting places.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jane M says:

    That is fantastic you managed to see otters, sounds like you had a great day

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for sharing your beautiful walk

    Liked by 1 person

  4. tialys says:

    I’m glad you got to see some otters – what a treat!
    The former owners of our house told us they had spotted a kingfisher over the garden pond but we have yet to see one, although two ducks landed on it the other day and swam around for a bit. We had to scare them off though as we didn’t want them eating all the tadpoles and fish and one of our dogs was staring at them through the patio doors all a-quiver and would have been on them in an instant if we’d let him out.
    I think you were wise not to use the stepping stones, although I might have had a go if somebody had been with me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • craftycreeky says:

      A book I read recently wanted a local kingfisher to visit their pond and they were told a kingfisher needs a perch, they dragged an old branch along so it overhung the pond and the kingfisher came, worth a try 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Laura says:

    What a serene place to follow your nose to! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    What a nice experience seeing the otters. Good luck next time looking for the kingfisher.


  7. nanacathy2 says:

    How wonderful to see otters. I have seen one, Once, and although I returned to the same spot many times , never again. Also just one kingfisher, quite early in the morning on a dog walk before work. Just a flash of colour, then gone. You should have done the stepping stones though.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. CurlsnSkirls says:

    I would have passed on those stones as well, but how thrilling to see those otters! And now I know what a sort-of wattle fencing might look like – charming!
    Are you going to join in this year’s Sewing Weekender, just announced for 12-13 of June? We had a lovely chat last summer, and I’d be delighted to do again any time, but don’t think I’ll do the whole Weekender.
    Thank you again for the lovely walk (although it didn’t seem so far from this side the pond! Lol! )

    Liked by 1 person

  9. kathyreeves says:

    That was a great walk, and to see otters playing, how splendid!

    Liked by 1 person

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