Every now and then I have this urge to see the sea. However, on this particular day, my brain was functioning in my favour and told me the seaside would be busy as it was the school holidays 🙄…..so where could I get to by myself? 🤔……Bempton!
I knew it wouldn’t be really busy there as the Puffins, the main attraction, will have flown off at the end of July. So train time sorted, I decided to walk into town for the train at 09.35…..
Heading towards the edge of the village and 2 new horses have appeared where the foal used to be 🤔
It was a breezy morning so was expecting mega breezy on the coast as I walked by the Westwood, the town cows probably wishing for rain to provide them with greener grass. It’s just like straw at the mo…🙄
The cows all appeared to be at this side of the pasture today, St Marys church in the background
Couples out walking alongside the cows
I must have been distracted as the next time I looked at my watch I had only 20 mins left before my train so had to get a wiggle on. By the time I got there I was perspiring perfusely , in other words, sweating buckets. I managed to get there with 5 minutes to spare 🥵
The woman behind the ticket window was lovely and smiley and could see I’d been rushing. She calmed me down with a smile and said I had plenty of time now and go and have a sit down 😊
The train pulled in soon after and it was packed with day trippers heading to the seaside town of Bridlington, Filey or Scarborough at the end of the line. Excited children with buckets and spade, one mum entertaining her son with simple games out of the window. Luckily I found myself a seat by the window and settled down for the 35 minutes journey.
Many got off at the stop before mine, Bridlington, the first seaside town on the route and suddenly the noise disappeared along with all the buckets and spades.
We pulled into Bempton 5 minutes later, just me getting off and I headed down the deserted road towards the cliffs. The little church at Bempton stands proudly on the village green
…and once passed all the houses, I was alone trundling the mirage lane to the bird reserve..the wind whistling through the fields to keep me company. Eventually the sea came into view just on the horizon..
Forty minutes later, I reached the centre. I was huffing and puffing a tad so I went to sit down and watch the birds by the feeding stations. I don’t think I’d heard of Tree Sparrows before 🤔 and they’re often mistaken for House sparrows, which are in abundance. Whereas Tree sparrows are in serious decline and Bempton RSPB do all they can to encourage them to nest here
If I hadn’t known I probably would have thought they were the common house sparrow, but now when I looked closer I could see the difference
The Puffin Trail, I wrote about some time ago, actually starts at Bempton, quite fittingly, but I don’t think it was here when I came last 🤔 It’s title is The Balance of Threat and Hope…
It was quiet, as I thought, but still plenty of like minded people enjoying the great outdoors
The first cliff edge I came to, previously full of black Razorbills, Puffins, Guillemots and Cormorants lay relatively quiet and empty
But still many birds were flying the skies and it felt peaceful, restful and ….well, my perfect place.
I knew the Gannets would still be there and I do love these birds. I didn’t have to walk far before they came into view
Don’t know what it is about their face, but it always looks as though it’s smiling…
I stood and watched these two couple for ages, sometimes having a barney, sometimes the best of friends 😂
As the sun shone, the sea sparkled
It was mega windy, as I thought it would be, but it didn’t matter….apart form the times when it was hard to keep the camera from shaking 🤣
Some Gannets were sheltering their chicks from the strong winds. How they managed to stay on the tiny ledges beggars belief
Many were flying all around us, soaring high then swooping down trying to find a landing ledge
I don’t think I’d noticed the pale blue ring around it’s eyes before, so perfect, like it had been placed there by hand
They’re such huge birds, their wing span so wide..yet when they’re folding them down it looks like a piece of origami, being folded into place
The Kittiwakes were also sheltering their fluffy bundles of joy
Gannets and Kittiwakes seem to like each other’s company on the cliffs, each taking care of their young
This mum was precariously asleep before chick look how tiny the ledge is 😳
When you see the size of them in flight, you wonder how could they possible land of the tiny ledges
I stood and watched these favourite birds of mine for ages. Other people coming and going. An elderly mother and her middle aged son talking about the puffins. Mum asking people if anyone had seen the puffins, them saying it was too late in the season for them. The son then saying they may as well go home, as his mum had convinced him to come with the promise of seeing puffins…..but he was also laughing and giving his mum a ‘never mind’hug…maybe next year.
I left the gannets to walk along the other side of the reserve. A man on a bicycle came over the headland from Flamborough way, his bike bedecked in load of birds, his fluorescent jacket decked with RSPB all over. And most of all, a happy smile and a wave to everyone he met.
A huge black bird flew over the sea…maybe an odd Guillemot wondering where all his friends had gone…
One of the wardens had said the Albatross had been sighted today, but at the far end heading towards Flamborough Head, so I ambled my final walk along that path and came to a lovely bay, reminding me of a smaller version of Durdle Door in Dorset
I could zoom in towards Flamborough
…but my legs were telling me they’d had enough…I’ll leave the Albert the Albatross for others to spy…
I watched an artist sketching the view and thought how wonderful it must be to be able to sketch the beauty before you…😍
I headed back to the café for a welcome cuppa tea and a much needed sit down. Two spaniels had been tied to a post and were following their owners every move while they also got a drink and something to eat
As I sat outside drinking my cuppa, I saw the bicycle man sat in the shade having his lunch. All the staff seemed to know him so a devoted regular must he be.
I suddenly saw a swallow duck under the canopy, zoomed in and saw the heads of the chicks in the nest
As I was watching them, their mouths all suddenly opened so I knew mum must have just arrived
I sat for ages watching mum come and go, many hungry mouths to feed
I got so lost in watching them, I lost track of time and suddenly realised I needed to be heading back to the station …
The long track lay ahead of me but the wind was behind me this time making it easier
The combined harvesters were in the field gathering the crops that were probably ready ahead of time this year due to the dry warm weather we’ve had..
Finally there, I sat alone at the station, thinking that, although no puffins this time, I’d still had a wonderful few hours with nature…….and in no time at all the train pulled in
As we pulled into Beverley, the bus wasn’t due for half an hour, but I had this niggling feeling that I should walk home. The village buses had been very unreliable lately since being run by a smaller bus company. The drivers are wonderful, but the old little buses keep breaking down d sometimes not even showing at all 🙄 so instead of walking towards the bus station I headed straight on towards the Westwood. If I got stuck, the bus would have passed me heading into town to turn around and I’d know how long I’d have to wait at any of the bus stops.
The town cows were busy with their own traffic light system of holding the cars up 🤣
…and the sun was shining
The village bus didn’t go by until I was almost at the village, so half an hour late heading into town, so my niggle was right……and the Heron was even at the village pong to greet my weary legs but took off as soon as it saw me 😂
A lovely day…..even if it was long and tiring….