It was a gorgeous morning in Lyme Regis as we hit the beach to search for fossils. E had the best find – a rock covered in ammonites, but we all found a couple in the end. Izzy was disappointed not to find more – I think she was expecting to find a full dinosaur skeleton.
Total wild time – 1 hour 30 mins
It was pretty cold today, so my family took some convincing that it would be fine to eat fish and chips on the beach. Eventually, they agreed, with the caveat that we would retreat indoors after 5 minutes if it became uncomfortably cold. In the end, of course, the chips kept us warm enough to eat sitting on the beach wall overlooking Lyme Regis harbour. Afterwards, we ran down to the sea and within seconds, both children had wet feet. We noticed the Limpets and Barnacles stuck to the beach defence wall and the kids enjoyed climbing over the sandcastles and down into the holes left behind by other children.
On the drive home, the sun set in a stunning orange sky and a small murmuration of Starlings swooped over the marshes.
Total wild time – 1 hour
We had a great afternoon on East Cliff Beach, between Lyme Regis and Charmouth. We skipped down the 114 steps, past some sculptures, patches of Bristly Ox-tongue and a couple of Clouded Yellow Butterflies. There were some great rock pools to potter around in and we saw several crabs and little fishes. Izzy slipped rather dramatically on the green algae and ended up with her feet in the air. Undeterred, she continued to jump from rock to rock. We arrived at the beach at the same time as a load of students, who looked very busy with tape measures and clipboards. Skirting around them and the jagged bits of metal, which have apparently come from a tip exposed by the eroding cliffs, we found a boulder on which to unload our stuff. From there, we searched for fossils (yet again the best one, a tiny shell, was found by E), collected sea glass and paddled in the sea. I tried to make a picture of a dragon with the sea glass, but it was hijacked by Izzy, who turned it into a fish. We took a photo, before it was covered by the incoming tide, then we changed E’s soggy trousers and socks, before climbing the 114 steps back to the car park.
We had thought the kids would be worn out, but apparently not – Izzy serenaded us with Christmas songs all the way home.
Total wild time – 2 hours
We decided to explore somewhere new for the final day of #30dayswild, so we picked Izzy up from preschool and headed straight to Seatown. When we got out of the car, it was blowing a gale and the waves were crashing against the pebbly beach. Kite in tow and keeping the kids very close, we followed the path along the the clifftops at Ridge Cliff, which were adorned with Thrift and Birds-foot-trefoil. Once everybody had been untangled from the kite’s ridiculously long tail ribbons, Izzy manaed to get it into the air and we made slow progress up the hill, with the kite crashing into the grass every few seconds.
On the other side, we found a sheltered spot to sit and admire the amazing view. I’m sure we could see right the way to Portland Bill. Looking inland, Izzy was confused by the sight of a rippling field of Barley, which she thought looked like a river. A charm of Goldfinch descended onto the thistles behind us, whilst Swallows swooped low over the grass and a steady stream of ramblers with spaniels passed by. The kids took some photos with my camera, devoured some oatcakes, then we all ran back down the hill, giggling, our arms held out like aeroplanes.
We went for a drink at The Anchor Inn and sat outside on the terrace, watching the seagulls riding the wind, a Pied Wagtail on the roof and in the distance, a couple of Rabbits chasing each other around a field. Then, we played Pooh Sticks from the bridge over the stream and the wind was so strong, they floated the wrong way, up-stream. As we left, Golden Cap was lost to cloud and the mist rolled in for our journey home.
Total Wild Time: 2 hours 10 min