A cliff top walk on a clear day

It is unusual to have a very clear summer’s day on the Cumbrian coast. Often there is haze. The day I took most of these photos it was possible to see wind turbines out at sea, the Isle of Man including the Point of Ayre, Scottish mountains across the Solway Firth and the Cumbrian Mountains. I am also including one from a few days earlier for comparison. The weather by the sea may change quickly even in a single day.

I was looking for (and found) wild flowers #bythesea for #wildflowerhour.


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A walk at low tide

On a cool, windy June day I couldn’t resist taking photos on the beach. The light was interesting and there were sea creatures, which go unnoticed when the sea is covering more of the sand. The sand had dried sufficiently for the wind to cause sandstorms. The striations (light and dark stripes) in the photos of the sand are caused by the surface layer of sand being blown across the beach. The uneven ripples on the wet sand were caused by the waves.

The sea creatures we found were mostly carapaces, which the sea birds had left behind. There were urchins, known as sea potatoes, some lobster-shaped remains and some broken shells. In the hope of finding a complete whelk shell hubby lifted one from the sand. It was broken, but there was a creature living in it! Sometimes common ragworms make their homes in whelk shells. A sea-mouse is another creature which is sometimes found on the beach. Winkles and sea anemones can be found on the worm reefs with barnacles on the rocks.

This is the second post on this blog about the beach at low tide. The first one was Low tide at St Bees.

A favourite circular walk

From the beach at St Bees there are walks in many directions. An earlier post described a walk up the head. This walk also sets off across Rottington Beck and then instead of taking the cliff path continues along the edge of the caravan site.

There are lots of different types of environment along the walk: grazed fields, arable fields, hedgerows, a beck and a single track lane with passing places. Many of my flowers for #wildflowerhour have been growing along this route.


The path can become very boggy in places, especially near a water-pipe and around the gates and stiles. There are a few stiles consisting of sandstone steps and a narrow gate above them as well as some kissing-gates. The drainage along the path has been improved in recent years. It was very dry on the day I took these photos.

There are no longer any buses serving the village, but for a number of years the lane was a bus route! It is a very sheltered area. The two sides of the steep lane are roughly north- and south-facing and have some different species of plants.