North Cave YWT then Blacktoft Sands RSPB – Harrier Roost

Date: 29/11/23 Meeting Point: Car Park at North Cave Reserve (HU15 2LY) – see map below)  Time: 09:30 Transport: Members cars Lunch: bring packed lunch and drink Cost: free mid-week Leader: Martin Kaye Numbers Limit: None.
Blacktoft – from North Cave, retrace your steps to junction 36 on M62 then follow the brown signs/map below/DN14 8HR. Meeting Point: Car Park at Blacktoft Reserve  Time: approx 12:00, Lunch: bring packed lunch and drink, Transport: Members cars Cost: free for RSPB members, £5 non-members, £3.00 concessions, Leader: Martin Kaye Numbers Limit: None.

Notes: A one hour 15 min easy drive from Chesterfield up the M1 then M18 to junction 38 on M62 then follow map/HU15 2LY on SAT NAV. Check that your SATNAV takes you into the reserve from North Cave village.

North Cave website

North Cave Sightings

North Cave – The reserve comprises six lakes, restored from a former sand and gravel quarry. There are three bird hides (possibly four now).

Blacktoft RSPB website

Blacktoft – 7 hides and small visitors centre selling drinks and hiring binoculars.  All flat, easy going.  At this time of year this is one of the best reserves in the country to see Marsh and hopefully Hen Harriers returning to roost in the reed bed.  The late meeting time is designed because those wanting to see the Harriers returning, will need to stay until at least 15:30.  In a previous year there were 6 Marsh Harriers in the air at the same time, and and we had good sightings of a Merlin and a Barn Owl.
Bring warm clothing because it can get pretty cold as dusk approaches.