Summer Walk No 9, Big Waters Nature Reserve - Tuesday 2nd August 2016.

At 7pm on the evening of Tuesday August 2nd a group of 11 camera club members met in the car park at Big Waters,
just North of Newcastle for a short circular walk. Big Waters is the largest subsidence pond in South East Northumberland,
near Brunswick Village. The pond formed in the 1920’s as a result of mining subsidence along the Hartley Burn. The site
includes a country park managed by Newcastle City Council and a Northumberland Wildlife Trust Nature Reserve.
While the country park and nature reserve are home to a wide variety of wild flowers and many species of birds and other
wildlife including dragon and damsel flies, red squirrels, great crested newts etc., the combination of the time of year and
dull and drizzly weather conditions meant that we were unlikely to get good views of wildlife during the evening.
The group decided to take a circular walk around part of the country park, along a path that followed the burn towards the
A1, and back towards the pond. This provided the opportunity for members to capture images of the lake, wild flowers etc,
despite the weather, with some taking the chance to experiment with different techniques for flash photography.
Although during the walk a number of different kinds of birds were seen including swans, canada geese, ducks, common
terns (diving) and great crested grebes, these were often too far away to be photographed successfully. Nevertheless all
members enjoyed the walk and chat. Many felt that it was a site that would be worth visiting again under better lighting
conditions and at different times of the year, when there would be better opportunities to capture good natural history and
landscape images.


Glyn Trueman.