fox tracks in snow
This fox looks like he’s been playing at walking the tightrope! © Katie Brown/Scottish Wildlife Trust

by Katie Brown, Cumbernauld Natural Connections Trainee

For those of you who don’t yet know me, hello, I’m Katie and I’m the new Creating Natural Connections trainee at Cumbernauld Living Landscape. I have lived in Cumbernauld my entire life and in this new role I hope to inspire my local community and learn something new every day.

I’m only one week in and I’ve already been out in all weathers. We even had some snow. The great outdoors has worked wonders on my new job jitters, proving to me just how important our greenspaces are for mental health and wellbeing. I may even be able to give up my gym membership because I got quite the workout at the Tuesday and Wednesday sessions with the Nature Ninjas, removing invasive spruce trees down at Glencryan Wood.

A small bonfire in the woods
A carefully managed fire in the woods can be a real tonic on a cold winter’s day. © Katie Brown/Scottish Wildlife Trust

The highlight of the first week for me was the Thursday Wild Ways Well session when we went for a wintery walk through Cumbernauld Glen. Down in the Spruce Wood we stopped for a cup of tea and got some socially distanced fires going. 2020 has not been an easy year for most of us but the session was a lovely couple of hours where we got to leave behind our worldly worries and just be present among nature. By the end of the session I felt like a weight had been lifted from my shoulders, I wasn’t even bothered by the cold.

Fun fact about me, I’m a little bit of a bird nerd and I was very excited on Thursday to hear a bird I’ve never seen before. A jay, sounding the alarm in the trees, but sadly he chose not to show himself. Perhaps by the end of my traineeship I will manage to catch a glimpse or maybe even a photograph of the elusive jay.

Katie Brown

Katie Brown