I can understand why we’ve had a hosepipe ban in the Northwest. The last time I visited Hollingworth Lake, back in April, there was hardly any beach. Just a tiny strip of sandy mud at the edge of the lake, where you’d have to take your chances with the Canada Geese to get a space. We visited again last weekend and found about 5 times as much beach. And possibly 5 times as many geese, being fed 5 times as much bread.
The weather was the best we’ve seen for a while, but incredibly changeable as you can see from the photos. We had some lovely lunch in the Cottage Tea Rooms (I can also recommend Mr Thomas’s chippy) looking out at the sun shining brightly, and the wind blowing the trees around. By the time we’d finished and gone back outside, the sky was a crazy mix of angry grey clouds threatening to overcome a pale blue sky which wouldn’t quite allow itself to be hidden away.
The outlook changed as quickly as we scoffed our icecreams at the lakeside kiosk. The wind whipped up again and we watched boats and windsurfers flying across in front of us. We could see the wind turbines on nearby Scout Moor spinning madly. From our house we can see them up in the hills in the distance. At Hollingworth Lake, we’re up in the hills alongside them.
We took a stroll around the edge of the lake, over towards the visitors centre. This is a real gem, redesigned and refurbished a few years ago. There’s a beautiful mural on the wall showing scenes of Hollingworth Lake in years gone by, and there are lots of hands on activities for children, where they can learn about the history and wildlife of the area. There’s a cafe, giftshop and toilets, and upstairs on the mezzanine was an exhibition from a local art society.
You can buy maps of the many posible walks in the country park for 15p. However, we only had time for a quick trip to the little playground here. It’s quite small, but there’s plenty to keep young children amused for quite a while. You could always forage yourself a few blackberries on the way down there too, in case you get hungry.
Of course, when we set off for home and drove around the lake on our way back to Manchester, the sky was clear and the sun was leaving a glittering reflection on the lake; a far cry from the apocolyptic vision of my first photo. Not much I could do about it from the car, so you’ll have to take my word for it!
This post is shared in The Gallery. On the same day that I was having lots of fun at Hollingworth Lake with my family, 3 bloggers were travelling to Bangladesh to highlight the work of Save the Children.