Rutland Water

Rutland Water

Route: Hambleton Peninsula, Rutland Water

Area: Rutland

Date of walk: 10th April 2018

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 5.4 miles

Ascent: 500 feet

Weather: Very misty and damp

As a special birthday treat for Mrs Andrewswalks we were staying at Hambleton Hall, a wonderful hotel located on the Hambleton Peninsula. The obvious walk from here is the circuit of the peninsula – anyone not staying at the hotel could start from the village of Hambleton

Rutland Water is one of the largest artificial lakes in Europe, and by surface water area is the largest reservoir in England. It is also an internationally famous nature reserve managed by the Leicestershire & Rutland Wildlife Trust in partnership with Anglian Water, and provides one of the most important wildfowl sanctuaries in Great Britain, regularly holding in excess of 25,000 waterfowl

Sadly our arrival coincided with some truly miserable weather – thick fog shrouded the whole area and visibility was very poor, resulting in very few landscape photos in today’s offering – there was hardly any landscape to be seen. At least it wasn’t raining and, having come all this way, we decided to carry on with the planned walk. We left the hotel and walked through pretty Hambleton village, passing through the grounds of St Andrew’s Church to follow a path which took us down to the southern shore of the reservoir. At this point we joined the main path which loops around the peninsula – it’s wide and well signposted and it would be hard to go astray

As we ambled along we kept a sharp lookout for wildlife. There was plenty to be seen, but mostly in the misty distance. The path took us through Hambleton Wood (which will soon be covered by a sea of bluebells) to the tip of the peninsula and from here we made the return journey along the northern shoreline, leaving the main track to follow a muddy path back up the the hotel. Despite the miserable conditions we’d enjoyed the walk

We could have extended our route by continuing further along the shore, but we wanted to leave sufficient time to visit the Birdwatching Centre at Egleton, a short drive away, in the hope of spotting the iconic bird of Rutland Water – the osprey. The helpful staff directed us to the nearby Lyndon Visitor Centre, having advised us that there was a ‘100% chance’ of sighting an osprey. I’m not a betting man, but with odds like that we took the bet and drove to Lyndon, located at the edge of Manton Bay. I’ll let the final pictures tell the story as to whether we won our prize

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