March 6, 2018
Some photos from our first visit to Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary in the New Forest back in the autumn of 2016. Mostly abstract shots of trees and some cobwebs but a couple of pics of actual deer thrown in for those expecting the obvious. I actually took a fair few of the deer but they are all shockingly similar and I don’t really own a long enough lens to make them worth the effort. It was a lovely place to visit and we go back every year now, although we have never seen as many deer as we did on the first visit.
The sanctuary itself is a short (2 minute) walk from a car park with decent facilities (toilets/picnic tables/shelter). There’s a deer viewing platform with information boards about the type of deer you are likely to see there. You can walk a decent way around the edge of the meadow where the deer tend to gather which has low fences and good cover, so assuming you don’t screech like an overexcited weasel (some of the other visitors were) you can sit quietly and watch the deer do their thing, which mostly consists of them sitting watching you do your thing. When we visited there was a little exhibition and talk by the forest rangers about the deer. I have no idea if this is a regular thing, I hope so.
I’m fortunate in a sense to live with a small child who feels sleep is a waste of good adventuring time, we arrived shortly before 9am and enjoyed the peace and quiet (and the deer), by the time we were back at the decent sized car park about 10 it was absolutely full, along with plenty of visitors parking dangerously and illegally along the narrow country roads. Clearly the deer are a bit of an attraction. Aside from the ruminant wildlife appeal there’s a really good selection of nice forest walks (firm paths, regular benches, no aggressive gradients). There are also, alas quite a lot of other people as the day wears on, so we ran away and ate a massive lunch.
Incidentally, the few shots I have of deer here were from off in the forest slightly away from the main viewing bit.
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