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Autumn beech woods

October 26, 2010

A month ago I showed you some photos of my favourite beech wood, and had a request from Becky over at teacups,cupcakes to show some more as the colours turned. With the mild weather, the autumn colours have been rather muted this year. The trees seemed to be subsiding quietly into winter rather than going out in a blaze of glory. What they needed was a sharp frost to get them going. Last week, during our absence in Skye, the frosts finally arrived, and we returned home to a brighter landscape with a distinct late-autumnal feel: crimson Japanese maples, half-naked limes and glowing, amber beech woods. For Becky, then, and anyone else who needs a walk through the woods, these are for you.

At nine in the morning, the temperature is hovering just below freezing. There is still thick frost in the hollows.

The shadows grow a little longer every day.

Underfoot, rustling leaves and springy cushions of moss make a sensory carpet.

The river can be glimpsed, cold and blue, through the trees at the margins of the wood.

But this young cock pheasant is far too busy to admire the view – let alone to stand still for a photograph. His magnificent adult plumage is almost complete now, just a few scruffy patches left on his head and neck.

Out in the woods again with the dogs at lunchtime, I stop to watch the midday sun dappling the tree-trunks,

and turning the leaves to molten amber.

I love autumn.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. Barbara M. permalink
    October 26, 2010 12:50 pm

    The most amazing thing about autumn leaves is how glorious they are in total….. and yet, if you search for “One Perfect Leaf” there are none! Every single one has a flaw, a blemish, a brown spot. But taken together, they look perfect.

    I use this as an encouraging metaphor for myself: Not perfect, not by a long shot. But put me with a group of other imperfect humans, and together, we are amazing.

    Thank you so much for the seeds. They arrived and have been planted here in NH, where the autumn colors have been superb this year.

    • dancingbeastie permalink
      October 27, 2010 3:10 pm

      What a striking metaphor: I like it very much. And I’m glad the seeds have arrived safely. Fingers crossed for them…

  2. October 26, 2010 4:48 pm

    I love the fact that so many bright, vivid Autumnal colours can sit harmoniously together and not clash – isn’t nature amazing?!

  3. October 26, 2010 10:37 pm

    What wonderful photographs, thanks so much for sharing your autumn pictures and your favourite beech woods 🙂

    I love autumn it’s my favourite season


  4. Wendy permalink
    October 26, 2010 10:52 pm

    My mother used to have a saying which I can’t quite remember. and she is not here to ask anymore. but it was lovely – something about no colours in nature will ever clash because everything fits so well together.
    Your photos are lovely (as usual!) Love the autumnal tones of everthing, including the pheasant.

    • dancingbeastie permalink
      October 27, 2010 3:14 pm

      Aw, thanks! I would say that it’s impossible to take a bad picture of this sort of beauty – except that my very basic camera doesn’t seem to be able to cope with any movement at all, even a strolling pheasant right beside me. But the pheasant was such a handsome chap that I thought I’d show him anyway.

  5. Kate/Massachusetts permalink
    October 27, 2010 12:29 am

    Such beauty! That pheasant is so beautiful!

    • dancingbeastie permalink
      October 27, 2010 3:16 pm

      Isn’t he? There are lots of them here and they are always a pleasure to look at (except when they’re standing in the middle of the road when I’m trying to get to school!).

  6. October 29, 2010 1:16 pm

    Thank you! Stunning, just stunning, I can almost imagine I was there, leaves crunching underfoot. That moss is just beautiful, it looks to me like hundreds of tiny green stars. And I love the final image, the way the light is bursting in at the corner of the picture. This post has been very much appreciated from the concrete jungle of my office.

    • dancingbeastie permalink
      October 29, 2010 6:41 pm

      Happy to share it with you!

  7. October 29, 2010 1:27 pm

    OOOh such stunning colours! I drove through to Kirkwall the other day and saw some lovely shades of gold and red on the trees. I love the sound of crunchy leaves underfoot, though with the rain here they’ve been more slidy than crunchy. I have, though, come to terms with autumn again this year. It takes me a while but I get there eventually!

    • dancingbeastie permalink
      October 29, 2010 6:42 pm

      Good on you. I am hoarding my sights of golden trees this week, knowing that there is a long stark winter ahead. It does seem a blink of an eye since last winter, doesn’t it?!


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