This was a strange weekend, people knew this could be the last chance for a while to get out. Some despite the instructions went for a popular spot, a well known beach or area of a national park. Myself, I went quiet, more intent on a local pub that might be selling takeaway beer!! I chose an area of south eats Dartmoor that had a hamlet or two and a village, Holne, to park in. I headed first for the River Dart, knowing that if I got there early I would see very little people, I saw 5 on the 2 miles to Sharrah Pool. Then the rest would be a matter of staying away from Venford reservoir and to the path to Michelcombe. I saw 5 more on the remaining 5 miles or so. We are in strange times, you would normally stop to chat to other walkers, not today, you avoided socialising and therefore avoid catching the dreaded C. All the way around this walk, my brain was thinking of what I will do if lockdown happened, as it is I have walks from my doorstep. I am lucky in that way to live at the edge of Plymouth. Farmland is all around and with it paths snake to the sea. After today I did one more day of work in an office before we closed, when we go back and life becomes a form of normal, we don’t yet know. All I know is that the hills will be there another day, treat it like bad weather, were you cannot walk to the summit and turn back. On those days getting to the summit isn’t recommended, but getting back home is compulsory. Today going out isn’t recommended, but staying alive is compulsory. Stay safe everyone.
I’d struggled on where to walk, mindful of the lockdown that looked to be coming (despite the fact that I would work the next day). I’d chosen Holne, this is the church in the village.
With my mind on other things I’d left the house with a flask, but with nothing in it!! This leat drops into this trough here in Holne, my saviour!
The Two Moors Way, this takes me down towards Holne woods
Across the Dart valley, Aish Tor is up on the right and the pointy Sharp Tor is straight ahead
Into Holne woods
The River Dart as I start along the path towards Sharrah Pool
The sun was shining beautifully through the trees, just after this point I dropped down to take a look at Holne Wood Tor, it wasn’t anything special so it isn’t one to include on my list
Holne Woods waterfall
This was my first visit to Sharrah Pool. A glorious spot for a wild swim and the most popular spot on the moor
The entrance to the pool starts here at this rocky rapids section
North Tor is above
One last look at Sharrah Pool before I start the steep climb up through the woods towards venford Reservoir
Bench Tor is just up there on the left with the pointy Sharp Tor ahead and Corndon Tor to the right of that. The Dart valley is below
The Dart down below and half way up the trees to the right is Hockinston Tor just peeking out of the trees
At Bench Tor
Looking across towards Rippon Tor past Haytor to Chinkwell Tor. Over the top of Aish Tor and the Dart valley
Venford Reservoir backed by Ryders Hill, there were a few people around here walking dogs
South Hams from Holne Moor
Holne Moor leat and the bridge which bring the Sandy Way down off Holne Moor. Rippon Tor is furthest right in the distance, with Corndon Tor furthest left. Hameldown, Chinkwell Tor and what looks like Pil/Top Tor in between
Heading down towards Michelcombe with Ryders Hill/Snowdon at the back
Whilst the human race locks down, the natural world is springing on in Michelcombe
From Michelcombe its a long path uphill through farm fields to the moor again, with South Hams stretching to the sea in the distance
I’ve dropped down the hill now towards the confluence of the Holy Brook and an unnamed stream to this, Gibby Combe Tor, this is some of the larger rocks near the unnamed stream, just above…………
One unnamed stream on my left, the Holy Brook to my right and Gibby Combe Tor
Leaving Gibby Combe Tor and walking for a bit I saw this herd of deer in the distance
The area with the deer in is the green field centre right, I headed straight on past the field before dropping down to the left to the River Mardle
Following the River Mardle downstream along the path you reach Chalk Ford, a lovely spot for a picnic
Chalk Ford Rocks down by the River Mardle, there are more uphill to my right which are the main outcrop
These ones, I didn’t head up to them as I wanted to get back to the car
Probably my favourite photo of the day, centre of photo is Buckfast Abbey
Bit of zoom picks out the town and the spire sticking up
I had to reach up above my head to take this photo of Holne village, that’s a circling buzzard above!
Into Scoriton first (not Scorriton as is on the OS maps), this is the Tradesmans Arms, normally this would have been busy with Sunday lunch but as of Friday before this, all pubs were closed. I was hoping for a pub to have takeaway beer, fingers crossed the Church Inn in Holne would take my sterilised 4 pint milk carton and fill it full of something yummy
Holy Brook bridge is crossed as I start my way up to Holne
One last photo across towards Ryders Hill, as for the pub, well it was open, I asked nicely and they filled my milk carton. Nice one The Church Inn. Support your local pubs were possible, they have beer to sell and takeaway. Use the farms shops and breweries nearby who will deliver, use your local butcher of fishmonger, they are not as busy as a supermarket. That way they will be there when things start to open again and you are helping a family to feed themselves..