Hunt for bugs, build a den and more

Den building in the orchard at Lydford Gorge

If you are looking for outdoor fun and games this weekend, there are plenty of opportunities at the gorge whatever the weather. For some ideas pick up a wild adventure scrapbook and start ticking off the 50 things to do before you’re 11 ¾.

Don’t be put off by the rain, get your wellies on and splash about in the puddles on route to the Whitelady waterfall. Heavy rain turns the gentle flow of the river Burn into a raging torrent, which fills the area below with mist and spray.

Splash your way along a path
Two kids in wellies in a muddy puddle
Splash your way along a path

The suspension bridge at Whitelady waterfall is a great place to play pooh sticks. Pixie Glen has a wider and quieter stretch of river good for skimming stones, see who can skim the furthest or get the biggest number of skips. Also look out for the pixie door in one of the trees in this area.

Another 50 things activity is to hunt for bugs, and don’t forget that they can live in the river too. The best way to search for these bugs is to look on the underside of loose rocks on the bottom of the river, but please place them back where you found them afterwards. Other animals in the Gorge are also looking for these bugs.

Brown trout like to hang out in the deeper pools swimming lazily against the current and waiting to eat any bug that strays too close. The best way to spot them is from a high vantage point so that you can see into the river. Look over the side as you cross the bridges on your walk, the trout are well camouflaged however they can be spotted when they move.

Brown trout swimming in River Lyd
Brown trout swimming in River Lyd
Brown trout swimming in River Lyd

The orchard area at the Devil’s Cauldron entrance has a children’s play area and space for even more 50 things activities. Build a den against the trunk of one of the bigger trees. Collect fallen leaves and twigs to make some wild art or make a stick trail for the rest of the family to follow. The orchard is also an ideal place to keep a look out for bugs and butterflies when it’s warm and dry.  In wetter weather keep a look out for snails and large black slugs.  If you find enough snails you could set up a snail race.

After completing the 50 things activities be sure to record it in the wild adventure scrapbook and pick up a sticker from visitor reception. As the seasons change at the gorge there are opportunities to complete different 50 things activities so have fun ticking them all off.