Posted by: mynaturaldiary | January 1, 2015

Winter is coming

What a difference 21 weeks makes. Contrast the scene now

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to the picture taken with the purple heather in full blaze in mid August.

{* see an animation of this at the end of this post!}.

Sleddale looks magnificent in the snow.

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As does Guisborough Moor.

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The Woods shield the snow and ice crystals from the wind and they form complex patterns.

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The rabbits are oblivious to this, as they leave their tracks in the snow.

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The ice holds the needles together in the branches of the trees.

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and locks the moss.

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Doubtless, these plants will take this all in their stride.

On the edge of the moor, the snow heaps up upon the dry stone walls.

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On the Moor, the Red Grouse are easy to spot. Their dark brown colour stands out against the snow.

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Red Grouse (Lagopus lagopus)

Their flight stands out as they have lost their normal camoflage against the heather.

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Only when they move back against the outline of the woods does it become more difficult to see them.

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The same is true on the dry stone walls.

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The midwinter sun rises low on the horizon.

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and it soon begins to sink, giving a wonderful sunset.

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Even the cows in the frozen field become listless, looking for somewhere to shelter in the night.

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The sunset makes Highcliffe shine like Ayers rock beneath the rising moon.

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The moon stands out in the branches of the woods, during the descent.

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And finally the woods can still be seen in the falling light.

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{* see an animation of this at the end of this post}. 21 weeks on, winter is coming.

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