Up And Down The Lane


Late this afternoon, the dull skies cleared and we enjoyed a warm and sunny day. Naturally, we took a drive into the forest.

Moorland, Holmsley Passage, young man and dog

A young man and his dog walking along Holmsley Passage,

Young man and dog

set off onto the moors;

Cyclists and young people

a couple of cyclists, passing a group relaxing on a gate crossed the junction of the road with the disused railway line that is now a footpath;

Walkers resting

and a group of hikers, relieved of their backpacks, took a rest on the grass.

I have featured Honey Lane in Burley a couple of times before, but had never covered the whole length until today. This is because the serpentine, steeply undulating, ancient road is so pitted with often water-filled holes that you really need a 4 x 4 to negotiate it.

Gate to field

Jackie parked the Modus beside this gateway to a field,

Honey Lane 1

and waited for me to wander down the lane and back.

Trees on hedgerow 1

The age of this thoroughfare is indicated by the high bank of hedgerows mounted by  gnarled old trees.

Ponies on lane 1

Todays photographs are reproduced in the order in which I made them, thus replicating the ramble. Soon a troop of ponies came into view.

Leaves and trunk 1

The tree to the right of the above picture is beginning to be carpeted by autumn leaves

Pony and autumn leaves 1

waiting for the leading grey to rest its hooves.

Pony on autumn leaves 2

Another wandered along behind.

Pony 1

This chestnut seemed rather scarred.

Ponies crossing cattle grid

Cattlegrids are meant to deter hoofed animals from crossing them. Not so these two ponies foraging in someone’s garden. They clattered across the bars as I passed.

Trees on hedgerow 2

Here are more gnarled roots atop the bank,

Steps 1

up which some home owners have set steps to reach their gardens.

Pony 2

Here comes another scarred pony,

Cyclist and trailer

soon to be passed by a happy cyclist towing a trailer.

Kissing gate

This wooden kissing gate was rather intriguing.

Pony 3

The ponies had other things on their minds.

Cyclists and pony

A couple of cyclists passed the next animal,

Pony 4

which continued on towards me.

Tree roots

This tree reminded me of Jabba the Hutt.

Banked hedgerow 1

Sunlight pierced the foliage in parts.

Tree trunk curled 1Tree trunk curled 2

How, I wondered, had this very tall tree taken this circuitous route before ascending to the light above.

Autumn leaves 1

A blaze of yellow leaves enlivened this garden.

Orchard Farm shed

Sunlight dappled the shed of Orchard Farm,

Honey Lane 2

and pierced a deep stygian bank.

Gate to field 2

Here is another gate to a field.


Can you spot the squirrel?

Honey Lane 4

Nearing the Burley Street end of the lane

Honey Lane rise 1Honey Lane rise 2

I mounted the next rise, turned, and

Honey lane with cyclists

retraced my steps, catching sight of cyclists in the distance.

Cyclists 1

They soon sped down towards me, the first two, with cheery greetings, too fast for my lens;

Cyclists 2

their companions paused for a pleasant chat.

Autumn leaves 2

I spotted a few more colourful leaves.

Woman walking dog

A friendly woman walking her dog commented on what a pleasant evening it was,

Sunlight across leaves 1

and, with sunlight spanning a nearby tree,  I was soon beside the Modus once more, and we set off for home.

Stag on road 1

On Holmsley Road  a splendid stag seemed confused about crossing.

Stag on road 2

It had seen the approaching vehicle, turned,

Stag on road 3

and was soon back on the verge and disappearing into the forest.

Those of a tender disposition may wish to skip what we had for dinner.

This was Jackie’s superb liver and bacon casserole, leek and cauliflower cheese, roast parsnips, new potatoes, cabbage, and carrots. I finished the malbec.




66 responses to “Up And Down The Lane”

  1. What a pleasant ramble – and so informative too. So, those banks are made of decayed hedgerows? That surely means several hundreds of years if not millennia of plantings has happened in this area? And that circuitous tree – now that is intriguing! All your writer friends would invent such creative stories about that photo I’m sure! Maybe you could do one of those flash fiction things one of these days when you get a break from bureaucratic stupidity…….

  2. Wonderful; it really is a lovely part of the world – and I think at least one deserted early medieval village near Burley. Loved the stag and the curly tree. I’ve met people who remind me of Jabba the Hutt…

  3. Your 8th photo in, is fantastically outstanding, I was totally captivated by the serene beauty of the exquisite scene….Wonderful Derrick, in my humble opinion, one your best pictures, well done friend…

  4. I really enjoyed this ramble down the lane with you! I love the dappled sunlight and the dark, overshadowed tree tunnels. It was good to see the beautiful stag and the curly tree is intriguing!

  5. I can’t imagine the New Forest will be as tranquil this weekend as your photos suggest…over one hundred of our students are roaming with limited map skills in an attempt to achieve their Duke of Edinburgh Award 😄

  6. What a lovely walk. Certainly plenty of foot traffic along it, both of the two legged and four legged variety. Thanks for taking us along with you. Wonderful photos.

  7. What a wonderful photo walk for my early Sunday morning here in Alabama! I absolutely enjoyed this. Hard to say which was a favorite. They’re all so wonderful. The sagging barbed wire fences along the road are reminiscent of so many country roads here in the south. The stone steps leading up to a garden appealed to my sense of quiet mystery. And I think the horse pics will comfortably linger in my memory for a while. Just knowing they are there enjoying peaceful days is a joy in itself.

    Thank you so much for posting.

  8. What splendid rambles you take, Derrick! In the first photo of the gate (where Jackie parked), I thought it looked like the start of a magical adventure, and my thought was confirmed with the appearance of the white horse.
    Your photos are wonderful. I particularly like the one of the cyclists in the distance. They look like they are traveling through a tunnel made of tree branches. (More magic.)
    I laughed at your Jabba the Hut comment–but you are right, it does.
    The curled tree is fascinating.

  9. The beauty in Jackie’s stopping outside the fence, the light shimmering and softening the colors in the grassy field was such a great insightful capture. I like roots of trees along ancient hedgerows, I enjoy the ponies and loved the scared stag with soft fur and covered antlers. When Spring comes, the fur will be rubbed off, I think. Possibly during rutting season. Hugs to you and Jackie! 💐

  10. Adding that I spied the gray squirrel with bushy tail, Derrick. I liked the worn steps with green moss growing on them as well going into the woods and the white pony in the 8th photo which truly was beautiful as another friend said.

  11. Loved that circuitous tree, how mind compelling! Glad you took the trip with the modus and braved the potholes to give us a full recount of that road. It seems to be very interesting. Did not realise before how close to the forest you live that a small drive could take you there.

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