One of the things I love most about travelling is the opportunity to get outdoors and experience nature. Sometimes a walk amongst the trees or by water is all that’s needed to reset, recharge and re-energise the mind.
On the way back from a weekend away for a friend’s wedding, we found ourselves passing Beacon Fell Country Park in Preston, UK and decided to spend some time exploring.
With 271 acres of woodland, moorland and farmland, there is plenty to explore. We chose to follow the sculpture trail which leads out of the car park, through the woods and up to the summit of the fell.
There were beautiful views from the top of the Fell – but be warned, it’s so windy up there! I was like a panda by the time we came down – I had more mascara on my cheeks than my eyelashes!
At the top of the Fell is a stone structure, marking where the Beacon would have stood. There is evidence that the Beacon was used as far back as 1002 AD. Historically lit to warn of danger (e.g. attacks), Beacons are also used to celebrate national occasions such as coronations of a new monarch.
Throughout the trail, there are numerous sculptures dotted through the forest by artist Thompson Dagnall. Alongside carvings of bats and birds hanging from the trees, a huge winding snake makes its way down the hill side. People were walking on the snake to make their way down the hill and it was a good test of balance to make it all the way to the bottom without falling off. Watching people tightrope walk down the snake was great entertainment: wobbly arms and legs all round!
Alongside the wooden sculptures, there were also woven animals dotted throughout the forest. Unlike the bigger sculptures, they were harder to spot and this turned our walk into a bit of a treasure hunt!
We found that the light changed drastically whilst we were there, creating a very different atmosphere throughout the day. From dark and mysterious to bright and magical, the tall trees filter the light, creating interesting shadows and patterns on the forest floor.
A fun place to visit, Beacon Fell is a excellent day out, especially if you like a little entertainment in your nature walks. It reminded me of the National Parks in America, which is great if funds are low and more local travel is needed.
Following our walk, it felt like all of the cobwebs (and the impending hangover from the wedding party) were blown away. I always feel renewed after time in the outdoors and it reminds me that being connected to nature is a good way of revitalising myself and recharging my batteries.
Although this trip was some time ago, just going through the photos has me longing for forests, hills and new places. Although the rain and cold weather is still here (in April no less!), it feels like time to dig the tent out and think about places to camp when the weather gets warmer.