Tuesday, 1 July 2014


On Sunday I decided to make the rather strenuous walk to Culverhole Point to the east of Axmouth Harbour. It doesn't look far but it's about a mile, which would be just fine if it wasn't pebbles! There have also been a lot of cliff falls and landslips with one still very active one causing me to feel a touch of apprehension while passing it. The weather was lovely and warm with a bit of cloud when I set out but storm clouds soon gathered up, rained on me whilst I was there and then for my walk back it was hot and sunny again! I was hoping to see some of the orchid species that I'd seen at Culverhole before but wasn't sure what I'd see when I got there as there has been a lot of slippage in the area over the winter and spring. So much so that above the Culverhole area the coast path has been closed since March.

Looking west towards Beer Head while the weather was fine at the start of my walk.

An active rock/mud fall with some very freshly fallen trees and shrubs. After the rain, on my return walk it had become much more active with lots of mud flowing and a few large rocks falling periodically too. To keep to the safest possible distance I decided to actually walk in the sea!

Looking 'into' culverhole where there isn't much evidence of landslips to see on the surface.

Looking back towards Beer Head and stormy conditions moving in!

Fortunately this year there are plenty of Marsh Helleborines quite near to the beach. Probably due partly to a lot of the ground nearer the sea having been washed away over the winter.

Marsh Helleborine - Epipactis palustris

Wonder who that abdomen belongs too?

A Female Thick-legged Flower Beetle - Oedemera nobilis

With a lovely pollen themed hat!

Bee Orchid - Ophrys apifera

Marsh Fragrent Orchid - Gymnadenia densiflora

Being on the Jurassic Coast there are a few of these to bee seen in the area too.
Ammonite encrusted rock.


Ian Andrews said...

Love the Marsh Helleborine. I still haven't seen one. I've just walked between Charmouth and Lyme Regis and back and didn't find a single Marsh Helleborine. 2.5 miles over stone and pebbbles for nothing. looks like I'll not find one in Dorset and will have to go into bandit country to get a pic. If you see a sweaty guy carrying a camera, emerging from the pebbles at Axmouth over the next few days, it'll probably be me.

Karen Woolley said...

They're really easy to find Ian, and if you look carefully at the first photo of them you'll see some spindly dead trees on the beach/rocks just below them. So just look for them.

Ian Andrews said...

Karen, a real slog this morning in the sun and the Seaton pebbles will be imprinted on the soles of my feet for months but what a beautiful spot; a mass of colour. Got the pics I wanted and more. Many thanks. Ian