Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Farming in the Fens–Lodes Way

Friday, 28th March 2014: I am really enjoying my cycling at the moment – alright I am not as fit as I used to be but a bit of routine and some targets do seem to be doing the trick. So my apologies if most of my Posts seem to involve either me ranting about how short-sighted our politicians are when it comes to transport and leisure or the poor design of cycle facilities.

I must also apologise for the fact that a lot of my pictures all come from around the Wicken Fen/Lodes Way area. That is partly because having a routine ride sometimes makes it easier to get out and cycle. The other reason is that even though you might think there is nothing new to see there always is.  Just at the moment the changing seasons mean that there is a lot of natural change about and lots of activity in the fields as the farmers get busy.  There is always wildlife around and then you also see some interesting things on top.  As an example I saw what looked like a man under arrest with a Police Helicopter hovering overhead – but more of that in a couple of days time.

For now – pictures to enjoy.

White Fen Picnic Area – leaves are starting to pepper the trees
Lodes Way

I guess the peat makes the agriculture round these parts pretty versatile – well the crops they grow seem to keep changing and aren’t always the fashionable ones (Wheat and Oil Seed Rape).  A few years ago daffodil bulbs were big – now turf seems to be popular, salad crops are a regular. We still see the results of those daffodil growing years even now.

Daffodils and Reeds in a Drain Together – Lodes Way

A huge amount of effort goes into preparing a field for the intended crop. Whatever was grown last season gets harvested and eradicated and then the soil is prepared for this season.  Now on this ride I was using my long lens (100mm – 300mm which equates to 200mm to 600mm on my Micro Four Thirds Camera – GH1).   The picture in my mind was the daffodils growing in the field margins – however the sun light coming through the hedge threw up some interesting shadows/sunbeams.

Daffodils – from an old crop still growing along the field Margins – Lode Way

On my way back I stopped at a bridge over Commissioners’ Drain, where Split Drove meat Headlake Drove (Lodes Way).  I could see at least four farmers out working in the fields.  What many people don’t realise is that driving a tractor is pretty tricky – especially learning to balance a tractor.  This chap still had his train wheels/stabilisers on.

Tractor Driving with Stabilisers

This driver couldn’t work out what bit of kit to put on his tractor so put something on at the front and at the back.

Farmer Feeding the Birds in the Fens

I can’t think of anything “funny” for this picture.

Tilling the Soil in the Fens (Lodes Way)

As I stood at the bridge there seems to be something reflective up the road – even with a zoom lens and by zooming in on the picture I can’t make out what it was. They must be UDO – Unidentified Driving Objects!

Headlake Drove

I used my phone for this picture – bathing facilities have been put in along Lodes Way.

New Bathing Facilities for Cyclists and Walkers on Lodes Way

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