One of the things I love about visiting our local country parks is that there are still huge areas of all of them that we have yet to really explore. There is always a new path to head down; a different direction to take and new things to see and do.
The main paths in Black Park and Langley Park are buggy-friendly too. This makes them perfect for a long walk with both my girls, especially when it’s just the three of us out together. We can just go where the mood takes us and Jessica can rest when she gets tired. Sophie quite likes to sit on the footrest and ride too at times. It’s not too bad when the path is smooth but it’s a bit too much hard work on uneven paths. Thankfully Sophie is usually happy to get off and walk if I ask her to!
The sky looked very moody over the lake. I thought we might be in for rain. We had waterproofs with us, and for once, I’d remembered to fit the rain-cover to the buggy. It stayed dry though.
The girls enjoyed collecting sticks, stones and pine cones along the way. These soon became fairy wands, creating a little magic along the way. One of Jessica’s sticks became a “mummy fairy” with a big leaf wrapped around it for a skirt. She was chattering away to it later as she rode in the buggy. It was lovely to hear the imaginary conversation between her and her fairy. Another reminder that magical childhood moments can come from the simplest of things.
We passed an ice cream van along the way. It seemed a good moment to stop for a rest and to enjoy the sunshine. Thank goodness for wet wipes though!
I knew there was a geocache hidden in the woods. It was off the main path and marked as being unsuitable for wheelchairs. I thought we’d give it a try though. Jessica had had a good rest and was happy to walk for a while and the buggy was light enough to carry (and easy to fold if necessary). It wasn’t too bad trying to get it through the woods in search of the geocache.
Jessica and Sophie stopped on the way for a quick game of Poohsticks on the little bridge across the stream. The water wasn’t flowing though so it wasn’t a very successful one. We had a little check for trolls as we crossed – trip, trap, trip, trap. Unfortunately, Sophie was looking a little too closely for a troll and tripped as she reached the other side. Thankfully she didn’t end up in the stream – just with very muddy hands and sleeves.
“Don’t worry,” said Jessica, “things can always be washed!”
The wet wipes came in useful again! I cleaned up the worst of the mud and we continued on our way. We had to abandon the buggy a few feet away from the geocache which we managed to find after a little bit of searching. The girls always love finding larger caches where they can do swaps. This one was quite damp inside though so we just signed the log and made our way back out of the woods.
The promise of a trip to the playground helped make the walk back to the lake a little more appealing. I usually try to leave the playground to the end of our walks around the country parks. The girls are much more willing to go for a long walk if they know there will be a playground at the end of it!
This year we’re taking part in #30DaysWild – a challenge from the Wildlife Trusts to get outside each day in June, do something wild and connect with nature.