Lymm Dam and nature reserve, Cheshire.

Lymm Dam, from the bridge.
We had some beautiful weather this weekend, so taking advantage of that we ventured to Lymm Dam. It was bustling with people, some walking dogs and some.. Well, capturing Pokémon. We parked the car and set off on an adventure - keeping an eye on the woods around us as we'd been told to expect some surprises.

Just below the church, there is a rock formation named 'the bluffs'.
The rocks are very climbable, and the children had some good fun exploring them while I read out the information provided. There are only two rock formations of its type in the UK which makes it a popular tourist spot - its caused by glaciers melting and eroding around the rocks, resulting in the strange formations you see.

People have left their mark on the formation, leaving a story to tell behind.
Over the years people have left their names carved into the rocks, which isn't to everyone's tastes.. I like it, I like the fact you can read names which have been there years and years. But I can also understand the point of view of locals who might not appreciate the defacing of their local landmarks!

Exploring the local fauna with little Miss!
I confess. At this point when we were looking at some gorgeous pink wildflowers, and catching an Oddish. I didn't spend a lot of time looking for Pokémon, but its a wonderful way to engage little Miss in the environment as a nature reserve isn't the most exciting thing for her - she prefers fairs and 'fun' things but we think its important both children learn about the wilds a little. She soon picked up on being near the waterline was different to being in the woods, and vice versa!

The picnic area, a short walk from the bluff.
This was the picnic area - it was only a short walk from the bluffs we explored, yet it was secluded enough to feel private and safe. The area was incredibly tidy, something I always appreciate when out exploring local places.

You know I love my mushrooms!
I haven't identified this one yet so we didn't pick it. I do enjoy finding mushrooms in the wild, they scare me and intrigue me in equal measures. I think its because they look so alien to me!

Its hard to truly represent the scale of this tree - it was absolutely huge!
This was the busiest part of the walk for us - some local children had created a tree swing and were having a little bit of fun. The path wound around the side of the water, although there was a considerable drop to the water - I used to make tree swings as a child but these children were much braver than I was.

Followed by the kookiest Oak tree I've ever seen.
We were still watching the trees for 'something', Mike had warned us about something we had to watch for but we weren't quite sure just what yet.

'The Wishing Bridge.'
This was a lovely little area! We all made a wish while on the bridge, and kept it a secret because only secret wishes come too right?

'Gateway to Narnia.'
This was so much fun for the children! The first of the carvings we hadn't expected. You could climb in to try pass through to Narnia, but it was closed to us that day. Inside was kept rustic and natural with a few mushrooms having moved in.

A dragonfly carving we spotted on the woodland walk.
A dragonfly! The children were fully on board with the hunt for carvings now, and it was the little Miss that spotted this one. Some were pretty hard to spot so I'm sorry if we missed any on our pass through - we'll be back to take another path soon!

An interactive carving, allowing people to pose in the wooden frame.
We all had a photograph taken with this wooden frame - there were steps leading up to the back of it, so from the front it looks like you have your own wooden pedestal. It was a steep clamber to get up to, but the photographs were well worth it.

The scariest carving ever. Honestly, this creeps me out so much.
I don't like this guy. I don't really know what else to say, I've seen enough horror movies to know this guy is probably going to come alive at night and eat small children..

This guy looks like Groot - we like this one. Much less creepy.
Much better! Again, little Miss found this one and it was much less disturbing than the previous carving we had found. The carvings are so varied and well made, they don't look out of place in the woodland. If anything, they add a certain something - a certain magic - to the walks!

If only everyone could have a back gate leading to a beautiful view.
We were coming to the end of the trail around the water now sadly. The pathways were incredibly well tended, and its very obvious that the people of Lymm have a lot of pride (rightfully so!) in this gem. As we walked, we did see a lot of fishermen using the area as well as model boat enthusiasts which was reassuring - I like seeing beauty spots getting love and attention.

The church we started our walk from nestled into the beautiful woodland surroundings.
The view from the opposite side we started on. The church is close to where we parked, so it was a good milestone to point out for the children who were resorting to Pokémon again at this point - again, not a bad thing! A lot of families were out as a whole group playing the game and we had a lot of comments about what we caught / where to catch certain monsters. As two adults and two children it added a whole new level of interaction to the walk.

We didn't explore The Dingle - but another day we will come back to visit.
And we finished!

We had a well deserved ice lolly from the ice cream van as we crossed the dam itself back to the car. I do want to come back to explore the other areas Lymm has to offer as it looks full to the brim of local hideaways and treasures - we only had a snippet! Watch this space!

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She & Life: Lymm Dam and nature reserve, Cheshire.
Lymm Dam and nature reserve, Cheshire.
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