Gradner Rocks, Lustleigh and Knowle Woods

A late start to this walk but with good reason to allow the rain to clear and for some sun to come out. The area around Lustleigh is lovely in any weather, but a bit of sun puts a gloss on the views and the houses here. We started out from Pullabrook car park which allows for a walk into Lustleigh Cleave briefly before looping around Lustleigh and Wreyland before a return through Knowle Woods. It wouldn’t be difficult to lengthen this walk with an earlier start, and there are plenty more tors in the area to look at if you want to add them on, for us we got back as it started to get dark so our route was just right. The River Bovey was the surprise on this walk, we’d had an awful lot of rain in the middle of January and the weeks before, and as a result the rivers were swollen and running very quickly (we’d seen the same on our walk along the River Tavy at Doublewaters the day before here). I was a bit worried that we wouldn’t be unable to cross if the river had widened at Hisley Bridge, but we got lucky and managed to tip toe through to the old bridge. I love walking the lanes around Lustleigh, and Linda soon saw why as we admired house after house with tors in their gardens. A brilliant place for a winter walk.

Start – Lustleigh parking

Route – Pullabrook Woods – Hisley Bridge – Gradner Rocks – Rudge – Ide House Tor – Brake Tor/Rockholt – Ellimore Tor – Parson’s Brown Loaf – Highfield House Tor – Pathfields Northwest TorPathfields Tor – Lustleigh – Lustleigh Village Cross – Wreyland – Knowle Woods – Knowle RocksHigher Knowle Wood TorPacksaddle BridgeDrakeford Bridge – Pullabrook car park

Distance – 6.5 miles    Start time – 12.20pm   Time taken – 4hrs 10mins Highest Point – Gradner Rocks 165 metres

Weather – Cloudy, some drizzle, damp and cold

© Crown copyright 2023 Ordnance Survey FL 2023 SF
The map and history of Pullabrook Woods
Walking through the woods towards Hisley Bridge
Hisley Bridge and a swollen River Bovey, it was the right hand side of the bridge that was the issue as the land is lower on that side
As we climb away from Hisley Bridge (having turned right), Trendlebere Down is rising to the left and I think that is Hayne Down peeking up in the middle at the back.
As we followed the path we hit Gradner Rocks
Its a substantial outcrop but in the woodlands so lacking views in most directions
Back on the path and we start to see more outcrops, none of these seem to have names but there are so many like this around Lustleigh
We’d walked through Rudge and turned left and uphill, we stopped for a view back down to the church at Lustleigh
A George 5th postbox in Lustleigh as we head towards Rockholt, this would have been place here between 1910 and 1936
Ide House Tor is first up along this road, there is a large rock to my left here to give a clue to an outcrop which is in the driveway of the house of the same name
Now this outcrop is a mix of Brake Tor and Rockholt Tor, you have the rock by the greenhouse plus all the boulders behind on the hill, to the left on the hill is more of Brake Tor
We carried on up the road past Higher Truckel Tor to here, which is Ellimore Tor, neither of these are on my list, but they are of interest on this walk
Quite liked these arrows on the tree trunk as we dropped into the woods from the road
Linda navigates a slippy path by the stream, there were plenty of large boulders here
Into Combe now and this lovely done up house
Our first look at some spring flowers, snowdrops near to Combe
I’m stood on a road here and not someone’s roof and looking out across Lustleigh and the woods
Along the road to Parson’s Brown Loaf, you used to be able to get a decent photo back along the road but the trees have hung over the road blocking the view now
This photo looks a bit arty but the truth is I didn’t pay attention to the focus, this is Highfield House Tor
And a bit more in the garden below
Now we have dropped down a slippy path from Highfield House to Pathfields, this is Pathfields Northwest Tor
And looking across to Pathfields Tor in the tree ridge, these two are pretty close together
Pathfoelds Tor
Beyond the tree ridge is more of Pathfields Tor, this is the more photographed side due to this rock which looks like a Terry’s chocolate orange with a piece taken out
Lustleigh church is next after a lane walk past some lovely houses
Lustleigh cross and the thatched house in Lustleigh village, we are heading down that path to the right towards Wreyland
Probably one of the best looking houses on the planet
Knowle Rocks are on the right as you enter Knowle Woods, you need to walk in a bit and descend, I have carried on downhill to the road below but this time carried on through Knowle Woods
Lovely views down towards Bovey Tracey
Higher Knowle Wood Tor (or its southern cousin which I group together with the northern one)
Packsaddle Bridge, as we near the car park, I’m pleased to note that the cottage on the left had a new red roof
And finally Drakeford Bridge and the swollen River Bovey. A lovely walk around Lustleigh which never fails to impress and provide a gorgeous location for a walk.

8 thoughts on “Gradner Rocks, Lustleigh and Knowle Woods

  1. Enjoyable read Steve, Tors are interesting things aren’t they, sadly my walks on Dartmoor I can count on one hand as I’m generally heading down to Cornwall, maybe I need to correct that. Nice the see the George V postbox, I keep my eye out for those and older ones myself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Its only since the death of the queen that I’ve had more of an eye out for them, I was never certain of the difference between the two George’s, there is clearly vi on the George 6th ones


  2. Must be a true dream for a Dartmoor aficionado to live in a house with its own tor!
    It’s been great to see the snowdrops out the past couple of weeks, that first hint that spring is not too far away

    Liked by 1 person

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