I’ve been lucky enough to have a commissioned shoot to a couple of beautiful Yorkshire woodlands this spring on behalf of the Woodland Trust including the delightful Skipton Woods which is well worth a visit if you’ve never been.
I was charged with photographing spring woodland and bluebells and my first visit in late April revealed a touch of fresh green foliage and masses of wild garlic plants with lush green leaves extending up the banks along the valley of Eller Beck, where the woodland sits behind Skipton Castle, which suggested that a second visit in mid May might be best to catch the garlic in full flower.
Though the wild garlic takes up most of the woodland, there were one or two patches of bluebells too, particularly at the top end of the woods on the bank above Long Dam.
Long Dam also provides a nice still stretch of water for photographing reflections and has a lovely weir providing some moving water interest in the woodland. As always, where the subject matter to be photographed is woodland, spring flowers and moving water, I picked a day with a forecast for bright overcast conditions and very light wind.
However, the wild garlic was the highlight of my visit with the carpet of white flowers looking almost like a dusting of snow in places beneath the backlit trees. I tripod was essential for the shoot, with quite lengthy exposures the order of the day under the canopy of trees.
If you’re planning a visit, the wild garlic flowers may be past their best by now but the fresh spring foliage should still be looking good for a few weeks before the drab greens of summer set in. Then it’ll be a wait for autumn for the next visit for lovely autumn colours and fallen leaves!
For more information see the Skipton Castle Woods page on the Woodland Trust website.