Birch and pine

Surrey landscape

I thought I’d share some more pictures from my walk in our short-lived snow, on Tuesday morning.

Surrey landscape

No canoeing today!

Chatley Heath is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest and it is managed as a nature reserve by Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Surrey landscape

Birch and pine

In its efforts to restore Surrey’s lost heathland, important habitat for several species at risk, the Trust has to do battle with birch and scots pine, the county’s dominant trees.

Surrey landscape

They self seed freely in the sandy soil.  I have to say, however that they do look well together under a dusting of fresh snow.

Surrey landscape

I did find a few beech trees too, some still hanging onto autumn foliage.  And one or two venerable oaks.

Surrey landscape

My 365 is from this day in 2009.  I foolishly let on to my daughter’s headmistress that I took photos.  Next thing I knew I was doing all the photography for the school’s new prospectus.  It was a challenge for me, especially as at that time I had only a very entry level DSLR with lousy noise levels at ISOs above 400, no flash and little experience.  But I enjoyed every minute of it.  This image is from my first shoot at the school.



Snow, then and now

willows and snow

Finally, some snow.  Circumstances (traffic and trains) were against me this morning and it was late before I managed to get out into the landscape.  The thaw had begun, but I made the best I could of it all.  I was attracted to the bright stems of these coppiced trees against the white.

surrey landscape


On this day in 2009, I was also out photographing snow.  My 365/34 was captured just 200 yards from my home.  Situated south of London and within the M25, we rarely see temperatures low enough to form icicles like these, so they were a novelty I had to snap.


Snow day

Snow landscape


My 365/33 images are from this day in 2009. Overnight, we had experienced an unusually heavy snowfall.  The children were delighted to have their first ever snow day.  I must confess, I was quite excited too.  We enjoyed a long walk, between snowball fights, and I snapped these on the River Thames towpath between Weybridge and Shepperton.  in editing, I have deliberately over-exposed the images, trading texture in the snow for a light, airy look.



Winter unending

macroWhen will this winter end?  Clearly no-one has remembered to tell these snowflakes, on the windscreen of my car, that it is supposed to be Spring.



Winter either bites with its teeth or lashes with it tail – Proverb


“The English winter — ending in July, To recommence in August.”
 George Gordon Byron


Thank you to those who have enquired about my recent absence from Focused Moments. I am fine, just flat out with college work and having to be very strict with myself about all things photographic as otherwise they might easily take over.  ‘Normal service’ will hopefully resume next month, after we return from a brief visit to one of my very favourite European cities where I will be putting my new travel camera through its paces!


Winter on the Wey


Winter on the Wey Navigation

Snow is forecast. We wait with bated breath. Services will grind to a halt, schools will close and we will make our annual pilgrimage to worship the fluffy white stuff before it melts.


Thames Lock, Weybridge

“I love snow for the same reason I love Christmas: It brings people together while time stands still. Cozy couples lazily meandered the streets and children trudged sleds and chased snowballs. No one seemed to be in a rush to experience anything other than the glory of the day, with each other, whenever and however it happened” ― Rachel CohnDash & Lily’s Book of Dares

The eighth day of Christmas: New Year’s Day

One tradition in our family that I particularly enjoy is the New Year’s Day walk.

This year our walk was on Dartmoor. The pictures will have to wait until we get home. But a stroll through any part of Britain’s countryside is a lovely way to greet the new year.


I like seeing families out together, often several generations. That’s not something we do particularly well in this country but somehow we do manage to get together at this time of year.

Did you go walking today? Where did you go