The more I wander through Ferry Wood, the more I realise that its many oaks are supremely adapted to the challenging environment.
The wood is on a ridge only a mile from the Atlantic ocean, and around this ridge the land is mainly flat, so the trees have to cope not only with Atlantic storms but squalls hammering in from the north-west, as well as power-laden easterlies.
They will brace themselves against a particular wind only to get caught by a gale coming in from a different direction. Sacrificial branches snap off and litter the ground.
Sometimes – because oaks are so tough – the branch will not snap but shear and fall while still attached, forming an arch. Huge splinters of wood lie frozen in a dramatic pattern, testimony to the dramatic event.
I often wonder what it must be like to out with the trees in a storm, and to witness this happening.