A Walk in the Country: Stodmarsh Nature Reserve
Last Sunday, there was finally some respite from the almost incessant rain, so we grabbed the opportunity to get out for a walk in the country.
When I used to catch the train to London for work, it would travel past some amazing countryside and some marshland that looked perfect for exploring with little people. We went over there one summer’s day when Bunny was still an only child but couldn’t find the walk so went on a different one, which was just as good.
Now we have a dog, I wanted to try again, so I googled it and made sure I knew where I was going. We parked our car at the Grove Ferry Inn (which not only has lots of animals in the garden, but is also very dog- and child-friendly) and then headed across the road to follow the well-signposted Stodmarsh Nature Reserve walk along the River Stour.
Now, as most half intelligent people will know, when you have a lot of rain, a walk in the country on the banks of a swollen river is likely to be a bit muddy. But not me. I donned my lovely new boots that are definitely not wellingtons and thought I was good to go. I was slipping and sliding all over the place, while desperately trying to keep hold of Bear’s hand and keep her upright and away from the river’s edge.
At every turn, the mud we encountered got thicker and squelchier and really was becoming more and more difficult to navigate with a toddler in tow!
As the path veered inland, I hoped that we might have reached the end of the mud and ploughed on, determined to complete the circular route we were supposed to be following.
Unfortunately, being marshland, we found instead that most of the path was waterlogged. Not just little muddy puddles, but little ponds blocking our route.
Eventually, we admitted defeat and made our way back through the mud.
We rewarded our efforts with a lovely lunch at the Grove Ferry Inn, and while they were lovely and friendly, I’m not sure they were best pleased to have this super-muddy family descend on their dining space!! And as a clue to the height of the water level, their cellar was flooded and it was getting worse as high tide approached.
Linking up with Coombe Mill’s Country Kids, celebrating getting outside, getting fresh air and exercise as a family. Click on the link below to see what other families have been doing.