Brockenhurst - New Forest National Park - Forest life in photographs

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This is a quaint little village in a beautiful forest setting.  With easy access by car or train it offers many facilities for visitors to enjoy such as shopping, bicycle hire, camping at a nearby site, to name but a few.  Here, you are just as likely to encounter a New Forest pony or other forest animal walking along the roads as you would a motor car.  This is part of the character of the New Forest and something to be very aware of when driving around it.

The main road through the village shopping area is called Brookley Road.  At its western junction with Burley Road, the North and South Weirs streams which join as one nearby and flow through Brockenhurst, go beneath the road here.  However, during the warmer months of the year the stream flows across the road and is known as the Watersplash, or commonly referred to as 'The Splash' by the locals.  This section is also prone to flooding in extremely wet conditions at any time of the year.

On Wilverley Road, at the junction with Burley Road and Brookley Road, is St. Saviours Parish church.  Well worth a visit for its beautiful architecture.

St Nicholas, one of only four medieval churches within the National Park is also here.  It is situated in Church Lane, just opposite the railway station.

Watersplash (unflooded) Brookley Road / Burley Road
Watersplash (flooded) Brookley Road / Burley Road
Watersplash (flooded) Brookley Road / Burley Road
Keeping the village tidy
The New Forest District Council have designed this litter bin especially with the ponies in mind, as they are allowed to roam freely around the village.

The message reads: "Your food and litter could harm the ponies and donkeys. Please take yours home if this bin is full."
A stroll across the green.
Carefree cuddles
This was an opportune moment whilst heading west out of Brockenhurst on the Burley Road. Two very loving ponies decided to stop in the middle of the road for a cuddle. As I was the only car on the road at this time I stopped, and Kathy got the shot on her phone camera - hence the reflections in the windscreen. (See next photo for a close-up).

As traffic approached from behind us we set off driving again and Kathy took another phone shot.

As you can see, they are not at all frightened or concerned about cars so they won't move out of your way as you approach them.

The reflective collar is to make them more visible during the hours of darkness. You will see them roaming about during the night, grazing as they go. So with the lack of street-lighting on the country roads, extra care and vigilance is required.

This is a very common sight, not only in Brockenhurst, but in all areas of the Forest.
This is in an area between Burley Road and Rhinefield Road, just opposite 'Beechern Wood' Forestry Commission car park.
With all its branches long-since removed and no longer living, it is a stark reminder of what was once a great tree.

If you wish to do a really pleasant walk along a hard surface then this is ideal. The Forest can get extremely boggy in places after some heavy rainfall, so you'll be fine along here.

Starting at Beechern Wood car park, this road leads to the Aldridge Hill camp site and Ober Corner Forestry Commission car park, and at the very end of this road is Black Knowl Caravan Club site, but during the winter months the campsites are closed so there is a locked barrier across this road just a few hundred yards from Beechern Wood car park.  You'll need to check the official opening times for both sites online before you visit.

The next set of photographs have been taken along this route as far as Ober Corner.  Plenty of opportunity to photograph some New Forest ponies, do a spot of birdwatching, or marvel at some spectacular looking trees.  These photographs have been taken in January 2015 so the foliage is quite sparse. As these broadleaf trees begin to leaf again then it will look much denser.

'Aldridge Hill' camp site
This is the entrance to 'Aldridge Hill' campsite. The sign shows the facilities available here, and was closed when this photo was taken in January 2015. Be sure to check with the site first though to confirm the latest opening dates.
'Ober Water' stream
The 'Ober Water' stream in these two photos runs under a wooden bridge at the entrance to 'Aldridge Hill' camp site. The first photo was taken from the bridge looking north, and the second photo is looking south.
If you continue along the road from Aldridge Hill camp site with the stream on your left, you will come to 'Ober Corner' Forestry Commission car park on the left.

The road from here bends round to the right which leads to 'Black Knowl' camp site.

A footpath / cycle route goes straight ahead past the barrier (which you can see in the photo) and continues for many miles further into the Forest.
Black Knowl
The open land in these two photos is called 'Black Knowl' and is between 'Ober Corner' car park and 'Black Knowl campsite.'

The standing water on the grass and in the ditch (frozen when these photos were taken in Jan. 2015), is common in the Forest following heavy rainfall. Good quality walking boots or wellingtons are essential.
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Copyright © 2018 | Laurie Pickering photography | All Rights Reserved.
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