Friday, August 27, 2010

First Foray

After Saturday and Tuesday's walks it was clear that there are already plenty of fungi around so I set off on Wednesday with fungi at the top of my agenda. Shouldn't complain but at this time of year, it's difficult to focus on just one or two aspects of the countryside. There are birds, butterflies and dragonflies in the air, and fungi, flowers and assorted creatures at ground level. Juggling my walking pole, camera and mushroom basket, I set off up to the old pack horse path which has the Derwent arm of Ladybower reservoir hidden by trees on one side and the Snake Pass visible below on the other side.

On the way up from the Derwent Valley road, there were lots of brown roll rims and false chanterelles with this wonderful orange peel fungus by the path side.

There were also speckled wood butterflies. A single bay bolete ensured I got my basket out. Once at the top, I got a wonderful view of a kestrel patrolling the ridge, but as I was clutching my bay bolete, I was unable to get a photo. Along the ridge there were blushers aplenty. A single saffron milk cap went into the basket. There was a red admiral fluttering around the meadow area here, and dor beetles were also to be seen along the top section. At a further section of mixed woodland, I found what I had been looking for - not in abundance, but enough to add to the basket for a tasty addition to supper: chanterelles and hedgehog fungi, with a bonus of a few charcoal burners and amethyst deceivers. A steady and early start to the foraging season.

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