As soon as I saw the kids, I was a lot happier - they were full of energy, and really up for it - asking questions, and making the whole walk so much fun. There was a point where the five year old dashed off in front of us, so to keep him from straying too far from the path, I shouted "watch out for snakes!" - that brought him back quick enough. So, I explained that, yes, there are snakes in the Forest, but our chances of seeing one were very slim, as they could feel our huge feet crashing along the path, and would easily get out of our way.
So, I was amazed when a high pitched scream alerted me to the fact that the kids had seen a snake - a small grass snake which was hurriedly taking to the heather beside the path as we walked towards Hampton Ridge. It was my first sighting of the year, and really unusual to see one when we were sticking to the beaten path, and in a party of 7 people and a dog. I'm not sure all the adults were pleased to see it, but it certainly made the childrens' day (and mine!).