What? Bwlch Nant yr Arian Forest Visitor Centre
Where? Ponterwyd, Aberystwyth
How much? Free entry, car parking is £1.50
When? Open all year round (apart from Christmas Day and Boxing Day). Red kite feeding takes place at 2pm (3pm during British Summer Time).
There’s no Gallery prompt this week so I thought instead I’d take the opportunity to blog about my trip to the nearby forestry visitor centre to watch the red kites being fed. I recently bought a new camera and helped a friend to pick a new camera so we thought it would be an ideal time to try them out.
We arrived at Nant yr Arian at about 2.3o giving us enough time to walk down to the lake side and around to the best vantage point to watch the feeding. There were thirty or forty people already mingling around, I spent a lot of time ogling other people’s cameras – lots of people were clearly there to take pictures.
We were aware as 3pm approached that the red kites were starting to circle over head, first the odd one and then a few more. We noticed the ranger appear on the other side of the lake, as soon as she started throwing the food out the skies filled with birds all swooping to get their share. It was an amazing sight, I switched between taking photos and just standing there watching the spectacle.
Always time for tea.
After the feeding slowed down to an occasional opportunistic swoop we carried on walking around the lake. We did the Barcud trail, a circuit approximately 1 km in length with only gentle slopes and a fairly even surface (the Forestry Commission website says that this is suitable for wheelchairs). We stopped at various points round the lake to take more photos, we also visited the kite hide and watched the late eaters from only a few metres away.
When we got back to the start we walked back up to the visitor centre and stopped for a very welcome cuppa. There’s a lovely big balcony area where you can sit with a drink and gaze out over the beautiful landscape – it was the perfect end to a really enjoyable afternoon.