Drink in the delights of autumn at Fresham Little Pond
The tranquility of Frensham Little Pond with its lake, woods and heathland is a beautiful place to savour the special magic of autumn. Restore your soul with its calm peacefulness and refresh your body at our welcoming café.
The Frensham Little Pond family trail provides an easy to follow guide around the place to explore its history, wildlife and wonderful views.
Watch, and listen, for autumn birds
Autumn is a period when many birds become active again and as the leaves fall, they’re easier to spot. The woods and lake at Frensham Little Pond attract a wide variety of bird species. Check out our bird hide by the cafe, or as you stroll look out for:
- Buzzards. You can often hear the cat-lie cries of buzzards far above you as they soar in the sky especially as you walk up the ridge towards Frensham Common.
- Kestrels. Easily identified as a small bird that hovers above the heather as it hunts for small mammals
- Woodland birds such fast flying jays, often seen as a bight flash with a hint of blue as it dashes through the trees collecting acorns for the winter. The drumming of spotted woodpeckers in woods is unmistakeable. The chuckling ‘yaffle’ of a green woodpecker is also notable. They like to hunt for ants on grass, and will fly off when disturbed.
- Owls. With the light falling earlier in the afternoon, you may catch some of the owls coming out to hunt. Look for the eerie whiteness of a barn owl, the chunky little owl or hear the haunting t’whit-t’woo of tawny owls.
- Water birds. The lake is a wonderful place to check out the elegant herons and swans, the merry coots and chuckling moorhens. You may also spot some of our glamorous guests such as great crested grebe, shelduck or widgeon
- Winter visitors. As the season progresses and the temperature drops you may be lucky to see some of our regular winter visitors in the woods and open areas - bramblings, fieldfares and redwings. Look out for the dandy waxwings perching high, chomping greedily on rowan berries or hawthorns
Savour the reds, russets and golds of autumn as you stroll along the paths. In the woods, you’ll see the oaks, beeches, hornbeams and hazel trees all clothed in varying shades of yellow. Others, such as hawthorn and wild maple will be showing off their fiery red leaves. Don’t forget the berries either - bright red hawthorn, guelder rose (look like glace cherries), dark luscious elderberries and glittering rowan.
Fly a kite
Autumn often brings with it stronger breezes. The high ridge at Frensham Little Pond is an ideal spot for flying kites. You may be starting with a plastic bag wrapped around bamboo sticks or you may have a super-dooper stunt kite, but the breeze will probably give it lift. Do make sure you are well out of everyone’s way though.
Play among the trees
There are plenty of leafy playgrounds around so you can get the family stuck into these activities:
- Climb a tree. Scramble up and see how far you can go!
- Collect fruits - nuts, acorns, berries. See how many you can collect and identify. Score extra points for the rare items - juniper berries, alder cones, wild cherry, yew berries. No matter how tasty they look, don’t eat unless you are sure they are safe. Some can cause an upset tummy.
- Measure the girth. Put your arms around the trunk and see how big it is. How many family members have to join in to reach all around? Which is the fattest tree in the wood?
- Hunt for bugs. Examine the bark and see what creepy-crawlies are there? What sort of tree has the greatest variety?
- Bark rubbing. Take some paper and some crayons. Hold the paper onto the bark and rub to reveal the pattern. Which tree makes the most interesting pattern?
- Last but not least. Go kick some autumn leaves! It’s the ultimate feel good, mood-lifting stress buster!
Enjoy the cafe
Why not round off your day with food and drink at the Tern cafe? Situated by the lake and not far from the car park. It’s the perfect spot to relax, take in the views with a cuppa and some cake!