The crowded Barkby Beach - heading towards Talacre.
The clouds above Prestayn.
Distant views towards Point of Ayr Lighthouse.
Point of Ayr Lighthouse - surrounded by water, but with new UPVC windows!
The panorama from our lunch spot.
A fast swimming Water rail, flushed by the incoming tide - hoping to find dry land soon!
The same water rail - happy to be back on dry land!
Mike at the new signpost at the Talacre Nature Reserve.
Note the time - this photograph was taken after lunch!
Walk stats: Distance:9.8 miles. Climb: 485' GPS wind assisted, but nearer 100' in reality!
Time: 4 hours 33 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.8 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 2.1 m.p.h.
Group: Just the "Tuffty Club Members - Martyn and Mike.
A very high tide was expected at about 12-30, so we decided to walk along the beach to Talacre. This proved a wise choice as one section around Presthaven Sands we were walking on the edge, with just enough dry land left before we would have had to trek over the dunes.
Although we were walking just after 09-00, in places the tide was quite close and by the time we reached the Point of Air Lighthouse we were walking along the water's edge, like school children trying not to get wet feet as that last wave encroached a little quicker than expected.
Although we had been in warm sunshine all morning, the wind was quite cool, and we did wonder where we could find a sheltered spot for lunch. Thankfully one of the pic-nic tables on the way to the RSPB Point of Air hide provided just the spot. We enjoyed an early lunch with warm sunshine on our backs watching the incoming tide eventually covering the whole of the marsh in front of us.
The panorama view gives the marsh as we started lunch, the swimming Water rail gives it as we finished lunch.
Just after lunch we thought we were going to get the start of a shower, but thankfully the hail storm lasted a few minutes and the rain shower a little later was so short I only needed one handkerchief to ensure I could keep seeing where I was going!
The return route through the nature reserve, Presthaven Holiday Camp and the Prestatyn Golf Course is probably best done in this direction, easy underfoot as legs are getting tireder (for some)!
The highlight for me today was seeing the Water rail (a bird that I don't see that often, and have never seen swimming before!), with the added bonus of having been able to photograph it too. Having said that hearing Skylarks singing was a good second best!
Birds seen or heard today included: Black-headed gull, Herring gull, Lesser black-backed gull, Oystercatcher, Dunlin, Knot, Common redshank, Great cormorant, Eurasian curlew, Carrion crow, Stonechat, Common snipe, Grey heron, Mallard, Pintail, Skylark, Meadow pipit, Shelduck, Black-billed magpie, European robin, Common blackbird, Moorhen and Water rail.
It was good to get back to the car and not have to worry where all the wet gear would go!
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Blue Bell in Halkyn, where St. Austell's, Ruck and Roll went down well as did the Piper's crisps with Mike.
Overall a great day out, even if my normal leisurely was exceeded considerably!