Tuesday 20 October

The stormy weather is approaching and I went to have a look at Freshwater Bay. A few steps from our house.

And here are the waves pounding over the prom. But our walk today took us inland first of all, north to the Golden Hill country park. In the centre is a fort, built by Palmerston when a French invasion was feared. It was in fact used by the military for about 100 years but has now been converted into luxury apartments. We looked in vain for red squirrels, but we found this old soldier instead.

From there we walked to the north coast to Fort Victoria, another Palmerston creation, nowadays with a cafe and other tourist facilities. Then along the shoreline to Yarmouth which is a very quaint and attractive little place. Its current claim to fame is the car ferry, but it is an ancient town, almost in a time warp.

There used to be a railway line to Yarmouth but today it is a walking and cycling trail and we followed it back to Freshwater, passing the former station en route.

The signal box is now a cafe and cycle hire.

The track goes along the River Yar, which is quite shallow with reeds and bulrushes and is a sanctuary for many birds. Very pretty. Back to base walking over Afton Down, to look at a stormy sea.

I have had some very interesting conversations with my fellow walkers. Interestingly the Covid situation is never mentioned, it seems that we are all so bored with it. We talk about other walking holidays, other hobbies and interests, our families, where we live, how we like HF. One chap is a marine pilot and has sailed on ships around the world. It’s all fascinating stuff and such a refreshing change.

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