stiffkey freshes

we walked over the saltmarsh this afternoon and waded the Stiffkey – a powerful current pushed the dogs sideways into the deeper parts; I just walked very slowly – it was nowhere near the top of my boots, but I had picked my path carefully. the snow and rain has swollen the river so it is more like its winter self.


rust dyed blue rope and rusty shackle on this  fibreglass hulk caught my eye, so I ended up making a little photo essay of Jonathon and his mussel fishing.


the river makes a lapping noise as it runs over the gravel shallows. the Stiffkey and the Glaven empty out into the big lagoon here behind the point, making a very special brackish environment, perfect for mussels, and other estuarine shellfish, which feeds a huge population of wetland birds.


a cold tough job, but an independent small enterprise, which supplies pubs hotels and restaurants all along the coast here.


at low tide the resin boat is towed out into the lagoon to the mussel beds and filled by shovel and rake.


today was grey and drizzling, temperatures around six centigrade, but as we talked the last of the cloud moved across and the sun came out.


Sal and Tilda fancy the mussels, they know there’s something edible there.


simple functional things are often the most beautiful.


the light here is really special; the huge sky reflects off the water and the wet mud.


potato farmers, supplying Walker’s crisps, buy water from the river for irrigation, and there is a worry that they take too much in dry seasons, which affects the salinity of the water in the harbour, and allows rapid silting up.


low sun across the marsh, late afternoon.



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