Big Moor Trip

Wednesday 11 October, 2017. Purpose of Trip: to watch the deer rutting.

Deer have a mating season which culminates in the rut, in October.  The rut includes such behaviour as loud bellowing, clashing of antlers and pacing parallel to each other, to eye up the competition! (Deertails, 2017).  They are, of course, competing for mating rights with the females.  This is what we aimed to see.

stag and hinds a way away

First group pic with simon to the right

We left Brackenhurst at around 13.30.  Originally, it was intended to leave at 13.00, but it was found that the trip was rather popular, with more people attending than we thought we had room for, so a little bit of ‘sorting out’ was required!

We parked at the Grouse Inn (no, we didn’t go in, and anyway, it was closed!) and walked across the road, through the gate (shutting it after us!) and across the cow field.

Due to the rain, which was coming down in buckets, the going was very muddy, and slippery in places, so we had to pick our way up the hill, but we managed fine.

group spread out along the path

We managed to spot deer almost straight away, after we had reached the top.

Sophies female deer pic 1



A stag was spotted on the far horizon, and we heard some stags bellowing, then saw a couple of them running away, along a ridge, from another stag.

stag looking to its left

stag bellowing

Due to the rain, our binoculars needed to be wiped on a regular basis, and so did our camera lenses, which unfortunately led to some hazy images.  The views around us were beautiful even so.

general view near the rocks

Looking from the sticking out rock

Sophies big moor pic near the sticking out rock

When we got to the top, there was some interesting lichen on the stones.  On the way, Max found a bird’s foot.  So it wasn’t ALL about the deer, but mainly, it was.

Lichen with raindrops


The drive was a long one, but the trip was worth the effort, and one might say that the wind and rain were exhilarating!  A definite recommendation for another day out.

group pic near the top stones and shelter

group pic two in two groups



Deertails. 2017. Looking Forward to the Spectacle of the Autumn Rut.  [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 October 2017]



Mitchell, B., Staines, B., W., Welch, D., National Environment Research Council. 1977. Ecology nof Red Deer. [Online] Available at:

The National Trust. 2017. Walking Trail. [Online] Available at:



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