Right up your alley

I love the name Alley Pond Park; it conjures up images of urban grittiness, and its location does nothing to dispel that. It is bordered and criss-crossed by some heavily-trafficked thoroughfares including the Long Island Expressway, Grand Central Parkway and the Cross Island Parkway. This place is loud, loud, loud, but if you can get over the constant drone of the traffic, it is also quite lovely. I only explored the part north of the Long Island Expressway which is mainly wetlands with a few woodland trails. I think this is a park to be done in two parts, as it is essentially chopped in half by the Long Island Expressway which makes getting from one end to the other arduous. However, the top half afforded me almost 4 hours worth of exploration and some lovely sights. There is a Conservation Centre at the top of the park which offers all kinds of family and school programmes and several trails have boardwalks making it easily accessible for those not so steady on their feet. If you push on further, there are a few squelchy, rocky, clambering trails for braver souls. This is not a place for strenuous hiking; to me it feels a little tame and the noise pollution is really invasive, but it has some wonderful wildlife and is a great one for the kids.

Alley Creek. The eponymous Alley Pond is on the other side of the Long Island Expressway so I shall have to visit that another day
One of several boardwalk trails
Colourful archway
Ivy-lined pathway

The place is teaming with birds; I saw more birds here than I have in any other park in New York to date. Here are a few I spotted today.

This bird told me in no uncertain terms what he thought about my intrusion. Seriously, how rude!
I'm pretty sure these guys were on a date

There was an added bonus to the day.

As I was standing watching some birds, I felt something on my foot. This cheeky chappy ran right over me.
He then turned around, as if to say 'Did I just step in human?'
Shaking it off, he stopped for a quick groom...
...before hopping off into the forest.
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4 thoughts on “Right up your alley”

    1. It really is a great park, Katie, and all the kids I saw today were having a fantastic time and getting so excited whenever a bird swooped by. I love seeing children enjoying nature and wildlife. x

  1. What a lovely spot. Even with the noise pollution, it’s comforting to know there are still little wild corners to be found. Great shots. I’ve never had a rabbit step on me, but a few skunks scurried over my feet when I used to spend hours standing around in the dark, tracking owls.
    Thanks for sharing this lovely little corner of the world.

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