Fallow morning

On Monday I had to pay a visit to Leicester.  That’s a two and a half hour drive each way assuming the M3, M25 and M1 are actually moving.  However, it gave me the chance to drop by one of my favourite spots of Bradgate park just north of the city.  It’s a dramatic and rugged area, part of the ancient Charnwood Forest.  The park (over 800 acres) was originally and is to this day a deer park and within it lie the ruins of a great house owned by the Grey family who played a significant role in the politics of the Tudor period.  

It’s the deer and wildlife that draws me back whenever I can.  Mid November is after the rut and most of the deer have retreated back into the woodlands and away from the general access areas.  Consequently its much quieter but if you look about there are always a few spread around and if you are slow, careful (these are still wild animals) and respectful of their space they will sometimes let you get quite close.

Monday was pretty grey and overcast but it was still enjoyable to spend a few hours watching and photographing the deer; even if the exposures were a bit challenging given the lack of light.  On this occasion this fine fallow buck was resting and grazing on his own.  

The surprise of the morning was seeing a Woodcock being flushed from an area of bracken and oak by some other walkers.  It flew quite close by but too far and too quickly for a chance of a photo.