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A First Visit to Spurn Point

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Lighthouse, Spurn Point.
Despite living in Grimsby since 1972, I had never made it to Spurn point. Thinking that a trip was becoming a priority I decided to make the effort. Typically I had been busy all of the previous week during superb weather and waited for a mixed forecast. Undaunted we set off at 9.00 am arriving mid morning at the Blue Bell cafe where coffee and excellent carrot cake were partaken of. After refuelling we drove on a short way and parked at the bird observatory right at the beginning of this dramatic spit which extends like a giant finger projecting 3 1/2 miles across the Humber Estuary. Made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together by marram grass and sea buckthorn, it is in places only 50m wide. Here, close to the bird observatory, it is also extremely low and the biggest storm surges wash across it. It is here that it is in danger of being eroded completely.
Once parked we set off form the observatory heading towards the point crossing from one side to the other. There were plenty of birds on the river side but a long way away for photography. Most of the waders were there: large numbers of knot, grey plover, dunlin, sanderling, ringed plover, oystercatcher and redshank as well as a little egret. I was pleased to see sea holly in abundance, a plant that I am only accustomed to seeing on the west coast. There were also large numbers of the cocoon-like winter nests of brown tailed moth caterpillar on the sea buckthorn. This caterpillar is a menace on two counts; they defoliate their food plant and are also well supplied with irritating hairs. These hairs are barbed and if the caterpillar is touched they break off in the skin and can cause a severe, irritable rash Fortunately the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust have placed warning notices around the reserve.
As we neared the end of the spit we crossed over to the beach on the sea side where we gained excellent views of the lighthouse which made pleasing images with the weathered groynes in the foreground. As we made our way round the end of the point it was interesting to look over at Grimsby and Cleethorpes and see them from a totally different perspective.

What a wonderfully wild and isolated spot this is. A wonderful day out.