Thursday's stomp around the south footpath revealed considerable flooding on Manor farm due to storm Alex. The land bridge to Cormorant lake (north) was under water, as was the alternative route around the ridge.
Finch pond has reappeared, over quite an extent, but will soon disappear. Inert were at play, on Thursday, though restricted to the middle south and east of the land mass. There didn't seem to be many lorries around. About three or four, from what I could make out during my brief foray.
Saturday morning was bright, cold and frosty; a nice change from the deluges we've been experiencing. I was slightly disappointed to see that water levels, although still high, had fallen considerably since Thursday. This was perplexing to me, as the pump was not working on Thursday or Saturday or the week prior. I am puzzled as to how the water is draining from the site.
Despite the flooding, ground conditions were very good; firm to hard in, I believe, horse racing parlance. This is a far cry from before lockdown. A combination of freshly bulldozed spoil and plenty of rain led to lethally soft soil; the consistency of quicksand in some places. Large areas of Manor farm, including vehicle tracks, were off limits to me, such was the depth of gooey mud.
The soil had settled and compacted over the summer, enabling me to walk anywhere on Manor farm - apart from the flooded bits.
Having not been for two weeks, I was intrigued to see what progress had been made by Inert. They appear to have made reasonable inroads into filling Cormorant lake (north) before storm Alex hit last week. It was a little difficult to gauge accurately as the area being filled was underwater, apart from a small spit, projecting into Cormorant lake (north). This spit marks the edge of where the bulldozer had got to as it pushes spoil into the lake.
Inert were more or less forced to work on the middle part of Cormorant lake (south) or, as I call it, the land mass. Again, it was fairly difficult to gauge progress. I guess steady, is the operative word.
I made the mistake of starting my stomp by walking along the west embankment. I got stung rotten by stinging nettles. They got me through my summer wear hiking trousers. I used the embankment as I thought the ground from Longwater road to the ridge would be soft and muddy (i.e. sink up to your knees type mud) as it was prior to lockdown. Not so. The ground was quite firm, even round the margins of the emergent Finch pond.
There was masses of wildlife on site. Loads of Egyptian geese, Lapwing and Canada geese; who loved the large expanses of water. They seemed to prefer the emergent Finch pond, which is a reversal of what I have observed in previous years. I can only put it down to Finch pond now having lots of little islands poking out of it.
There were the usual plethora of small brown birds.
A polite notice first: All photographs on this blog are owned by me and subject to copyright.