11 members were sufficiently optimistic to turn out on a dry but windy day meeting up beside the Derwent dam wall. Having started viewing from this point we didn’t last long in the biting wind and with few attractions other than siskins a couple of grey wagtails, a very distant buzzard and the occasional chaffinch, we retreated to the warmth of the cars and the drive to the end of the road at the Kings Tree. From here all able bodied members lead by Paul, set off to walk beside the upper Derwent River and up on to the moor. All in all, 26 species were seen and while this year, no mountain hare was spotted, the lucky majority did see a short eared owl that broke cover no more than 10 m away. Not quite as exciting, but classics for this trip, were sitings of ravens, a peregrine, kestrel, sparrowhawk, red grouse and a pair of goosander.
After a bite for lunch, the majority of the group were conned into stopping off at Ladybower to look for ring ouzels. This proved fruitless, and while we were entertained briefly by a raven relentlessly mobbing a buzzard, the effort involved wasn’t properly repaid (c’est la vie).