Looking back to 2016 and on to 2017

It has been a good year for me out on the tors of Dartmoor and the fells of the Lake District. Looking back I’ve walked about 330 miles, give or take, in 74 separate walks, which I’m really pleased with. I’ve had some fantastic walks and some not so (one in particular on Lee Moor…

North Hessary Tor

The final walk of 2016 and the weather was as good as it will ever get (except maybe a bit of snow). The views were very clear, the sky as blue as it can be and no wind at all. The boys and i had a quick sprint up North Hessary Tor and back, starting…

Old Hill Tor and Wacka Tor

As with many people, I was in need of a walk after the excess of Christmas and to get some fresh air. Starting from Shipley Bridge gives plenty of options including this one to an area not visited before and then to my favourite named tor on Dartmoor, Wacka Tor! The boys were in high…

Stalldown Barrow and twice across the Erme

An afternoon walk with the boys to pick off a couple of tors in the south part of Dartmoor that i hadn’t done. I had hoped of having a good look at the two stone rows here, Staldon and Burford, however the daylight was fading fast on a grey day and the River Erme was…

White Hill and Willsworthy Firing Range

It was a beautiful day, a real walking day. I took the boys to a place that I’d wanted to get to for a while, Willsworthy Firing Range. I’d seen it from a distance many times, and heard it plenty, however I’d not walked beside the range or up to White Hill. This one ticks…

Cosdon Hill and the tors all around

This turned into a walk which circumnavigated Cosdon Hill, whilst picking up all the tors in the area that I’ve missed for one reason or another. I started out from Shilstone Tor and made a carefull plan to avoid as much of the soggy ground as possible. You are never going to be totally dry…

East Hill, Scarey Tor and OP22

A walk around northern Dartmoor, and a part I’ve not visited before. When you head up along the road to Okehampton Camp your eyes are drawn to the higher tors of West Mill Tor and Yes Tor, as a result you speed past the hills and tors around Moor Brook and the East Okement River.…

Gibbet Hill and Wheal Betsy

I wanted to get out with the boys for a walk this weekend however the weather wasn’t playing ball. Whilst the rest of the country seemed to bask in cold clear blue skies, the south west and in particular Dartmoor, held hazy, claggy cloud that stayed too low for good views or any views at…

North Tor and Venford Reservoir

A calm day on Dartmoor and a chance to get out. I originally wanted to go further north east, more around Moretonhampstead, but time didn’t allow so I opted for something nearer. Venford Reservoir is a favourite of mine and North Tor gives great plunging views down into the Dart valley. The reservoir was very…

Brent Hill

A quick walk on a Saturday that didn’t hold much hope for the weather, but which gave a window for me and the boys to get out for a bit. A short walk was needed and this is a hill I’ve not been on before. Brent Hill is distinctive when driving along the A38 from…

Challacombe Down

First walk back after a week in the Lake District and almost got caught out by the earlier nightfall. Had to get a bit of a wiggle on whilst crossing Hameldown and not too much of a stop at Grimspound in order to make it back with 20 minutes to spare before dark. I also…

Raven Crag

The final walk of a week in the Lakes was up a fairly simple fell on the side of Thirlmere which takes me to 89 Wainwrights done. The tracks heading up through the woods are steep but the distance is pretty short and it doesn’t take much more than 90 minutes to get up and…

Rest Dodd, Rampsgill Head and a deer rut

This was to be my big walk of the week and it didn’t disappoint. I’d neglected the Far Eastern Wainwrights during the 80 odd I’d done so far and decided this holiday to put that right. I’d fashioned two walks of 5 and 7 fells each, one that took in Steel Fell, Wether Hill, Loadpot…

Grasmere

Third day in the Lakes and the weather was just how you want it at this time of year, sunny and a nice nip in the air, with plenty of colour on the trees to give you some nice photos. To be honest I only took my phone with me but the walk itself was…

Walla Crag and Bleaberry Fell

Another week in the Lakes, although this ones a bit different. I’m staying in Keswick this time, in order to take advantage of the pubs and eateries on the doorstep and I won’t be walking as much as I normally do when I’m up here. However my first day here and I’m doing a walk…

Cadover Bridge, Shaugh Bridge and Wigford Down

I thought I’d had my last evening walk a couple of weeks ago at Great Mis Tor  however I managed to squeeze another one in on a day when the rain was supposed to pour. Luckily for me the weather reporters were wrong and I enjoyed a walk in probably my most walked area on Dartmoor.…

Sourton Tor and around Meldon Reservoir

I’ve driven past this area quite a few times and always continued on towards Okehampton Camp or Meldon Reservoir, however this time I stopped and took in a walk. This area is kind of sandwiched in between, Great Links Tor and the many great tors around it, to the south, and Yes Tor and High…

Great Mis Tor

After a busy weekend there was time for an evening walk. To be fair I wasn’t expecting to do the whole walk in a t-shirt nor was I expecting the superb sunset from the top of Great Mis Tor to finish with. I’ve not really got on with Great Mis Tor in the past, I’ve…

Wigford Down

Just a quick walk this afternoon and nothing too strenuous. Its been a while since I’ve actually been to the top of Wigford Down, I normally skirt the flanks of the hill between the Dewerstone and Cadover, but this time I made it the focal point of the walk. At the same time I took…

Little Leigh Tor

I’d planned this walk for a while and never managed to get here, always heading elsewhere, higher places that on paper seem more exciting. To be honest I don’t know this little part of Dartmoor very well, I’ve always headed on to Haytor or Hameldown, or not come over this far from Plymouth and stopped…

Burra Tor

A quick evening walk in the area around Burrator reservoir, taking in some of the smaller tors at the southern end of the reservoir. This is an ideal walk for when you haven’t much time and the views are brilliant as you walk along the old railway track above the reservoir. This walk also summits…

8 summits in the search for The Shovel Stone

I’d done a similar walk to this in November last year (here) and this time wanted to find the Shovel Stone, which isn’t marked on the map but i know is in the area. I’d done a bit of internet digging beforehand which brought up conflicting photos of the stone itself. All I could tell…

Green Hill and Staldon Stone Row

I’ve been pretty busy recently, that’s not to say I haven’t been out, far from it. Its the updating of the site that has got left behind, 3 weeks since my last post!! I’ve finally got round to posting this walk from the first week in September and it was a cracker. 11 miles, some…

Easdon Tor and Manaton Rocks

I had time for a quick walk just after luch before needing to be somewhere later in the afternoon. I misjudged the length of the walk really, particularly the part between leaving Easdon Tor and getting to Langstone. From that point I was looking for paths because at this time of year the bracken on Manaton…

Flat Tor

I’ve been looking at the tors on my list that I’ve yet to tick off, two in the centre were standing out, Arch Tor and Flat Tor. Looking at them on a map you’d think the link between them was simple. Far from it, this is Dartmoor after all. This is tough ground, very little…

Royal Hill

This was my first proper walk after coming back from the Lakes. Nothing too tricky or too far but an area I haven’t been before, around the Blackbrook River and somewhere I have been around, in Royal Hill. Like much of Dartmoor at the moment the grass is long, the bracken is high and thus…

Bigbury Beach

Time for something a little different, this was my last day on holiday before heading back to work the next day. I’d not been to Bigbury for a while and whilst the car park charges are steep its a good place for a little walk, especially across to Burgh Island. The tide was just about…

Sunset on Combestone Tor

I’d had a day in Exeter on a course, as I’d been a naughty boy when driving a smidge too fast on the Llanberis Pass on my trip to Snowdonia back in early June (see here). As a result I’d had tea in Exeter before heading back along the A38. The weather was gorgeous and a bright…

Little Castle Crag

This turned out to be our last walk in the Lakes this week, the weather on the Thursday turned to heavy rain and Friday we were leaving. Still this is a fine ending to our week of walks. As many know this is the smallest of the Wainwrights, standing under 300metres it would normally be…

Helm Crag and Gibson Knott

This was our fourth walk in 4 days, all of about the same length. Unlike the other walks though we didn’t stay dry on this one thanks to a heavy shower as we left Helm Crag. This is an iconic walk in the Lake District, the Lion and the Lamb (as seen best from the…

Aira Force and Gowbarrow Fell

Third day of our Lake District week and we’ve plumped for an easier walk with some interest for the boys. There had been rain overnight and Aira Force has been on my list for a while. So it was off to the Eastern Fells for a look at the waterfall plus a walk up Gowbarrow…

Family walk to Outerside

As is tradition for our week in the Lakes we all walk together at least once. Some go all the way around the route, some stop at a certain point and head back. The only rule seems to be get to the point where the family photo is taken and then the day is yours!…

Grey Knotts and Brandreth

This is the first walk of our annual week in the Lake District, I make no apologies (to Dartmoor) when I say I love this place. Yes there are higher places, more remote places, however when I’m heading past Lancaster and the high fells come into view I feel happy, very happy. After a horrific…

Great Kneeset, Black Hill and Cranmere Pool

Time for one more walk before I head to the Lake District for a week. As is customary before I head to high ground I tend to at least have a walk that will test the legs or at worst put some mileage into them. this walk turned out to be perfect, around 12 miles,…

Combestone Tor

This was just a quick impromptu visit to a tor on Dartmoor whilst driving back from Exeter, after all the moorland scenery is far better than the A38!! This tor sits right beside to road that leads from Holne to Two Bridges, so a quick stop in the car park and a wander and then…

All around the Cowsic

After only having one evening walk this year so far, I had two in two days. Yesterday evening I was with the boys around Hucken Tor, and this evening I’ve decided to make a loop around the head of the Cowsic River. Now I have to admit this isn’t really my favourite area to walk, The…

Hucken Tor

The weather was good (I don’t like to say too hot as I only moan when the weather is inclement!) and we decided a quick picnic on the moor followed by a walk was in order. We ate around Cadover bridge with the boys having a dunk in the river, not intentional, more they fell…

The ridge above Lustleigh

After a night out on the beer (other refreshments are available!) I needed a walk the next day. The mind was willing but the body was weak, so it took me until 4pm to get myself together and get out the door. My navigational skills do not improve with a hangover, so it took me…

Fernworthy Reservoir to Buttern Hill and back

It had been a couple of weeks since my last walk and I was getting itchy feet. I’d planned on returning to this area, as my last walk here resulted in getting soaked and the cloud dropping completely on the last two tors, meaning I had to cut short the walk. This walk allowed me…

History on the south moor

Most walks in the area will provide you with a good chance of seeing human’s history on the moor. In this case it was going back as far as 5000 years ago and the settlements at Drizzlecombe, alongside the 19th century mining at Eylesbarrow and finally the 17th century rabbit warren house at Ditsworthy. There…

Bench Tor

Time for a quick walk today and back to my favourite stretch of water on Dartmoor. Last time I was here I headed up to Ryders Hill from this point, however today was a more leisurely walk, with barely any ascent to talk about followed by a lovely circuit of the reservoir. Bliss.

Huccaby Tor

First walk back after being away for a few days in Snowdonia, which showed up the differing terrains in these two places. Dartmoor with its boggy ground, grassy hills and, more often than not, gently sloping tors. Against Snowdonia with its bare rock, steep climbs and many Llyns (lakes). Both in their own way have…

Tryfan and the Bristly Ridge

Coming to Snowdonia for the first time I was looking for a walk that would give me a flavour of what this area was about. There is the obvious Snowdon walk, or the Snowdon Horseshoe. There is the Carnedds or the Glyders or possibly Moel Siabod. In the end I decided that the Glyders would…

Crazywell Pool and Devonport Leat

I had a call from some friends who were down for the week, just over the border in Cornwall. they wanted a walk on Dartmoor, which would a) tire the kids out a bit, b) take in a leat and finally show them some tors and rocks. I figured Burrator was a good starting point…

Rook Tor

Some days you head and out for a walk and the conditions around you mean that you change your mind and decide to either, cut short the walk, or change the route. Today was one of those days, what should have been a nice little walk to Penn Beacon, was changed, due to thick haze…

Boys, beach and BBQ

Slightly different from the norm for me, no Dartmoor, no tors and no bogs this time. Instead it was a trip after work with a BBQ to the beach to catch the teatime sunshine and have a some fun. We headed for Wembury Point, mainly because its quieter than Wembury beach itself but also so…

Soaking wet on Saddlesborough

Whereas last Sunday we had beautiful weather on our walk above Burrator (here), this one was a bit of a washout. It started perfectly fine, with sunshine and the thoughts of a quick 30 minute ramble and some nice views. However the weather decided it couldn’t make its mind up and thought it would also…

A beautiful day above Burrator

At last a bit of sunny, warm weather. We’d eaten down the road at the Burrator Inn and a quick little walk was in order. This is a highly recommended stroll for those with little experience of Dartmoor as it is all within 500 metres of the road and the car. Also it gives you some…

Three Barrows

This was my first walk after work this year, the weather in the day promised much however once out of Plymouth and up above Ivybridge it became clear that any view was going to be a hazy one. As a result the photos aren’t the best but its an area I love walking in and…

Wind Tor

Today I wanted a simple walk, not too far, some nice views and somewhere new. All of today’s route was new ground to me, 3 tors I haven’t been on before, decent views despite the haze and finally warm enough for just a t-shirt!! Having finished the walk I was a little disappointed I didn’t…

Hound Tor and the Bowermans Nose

Bank Holiday weekend and one good day which allowed for one quick walk (here), however the Sunday didn’t look a wash out so I headed to the eastern side of Dartmoor and hopefully I would hang on to the drier weather for longer. As it was it drizzled a bit and the cloud dropped but…

Hawks Tor and Collard Tor

Another beautiful day on a Saturday and to earn our lunch a quick walk was in order. These two tors are probably the closest to Plymouth and therefore the easiest to get to. The walk itself isn’t much more than 30 minutes, although the views back to Plymouth Sound and out to sea may make you…

Down Tor in the sunshine

I was heading for a day out in Tavistock and decided that a nice walk at Burrator would build up an appetite for lunch! An easy walk to Down Tor was planned, giving lovely views back to Burrator reservoir. I’ve said a number of times that this is my favourite tor on Dartmoor due to…

Cosdon Hill round to Belstone Tor

The first proper long walk this year, with the clocks going back, daylight is longer and the weather is getting more favourable. I have neglected the north eastern corner of Dartmoor, particularly around Belstone so this was a walk to put it right. I took in 9 new tops, plus a couple of stone circles…

North Hessary Tor

The weather was set fair for the weekend and after a big lunch we decided on a walk help digest the food! I’ve been up North Hessary Tor before , however I’ve never been to the two satellite tors that sit on its north western side. This walk isn’t more than an hour and involves…

Avon Dam and Grippers Hill

Another week in Devon where the weather was better in the week (when I was in work) than it is at the weekend (when I’m not). This weekend strong winds, of around 50mph, were forecast, however I thought I’d see what happened regarding the weather. As it was, some sun shone in Plymouth and I…

Mountbatten Fort and Breakwater

Just time for a quick walk this afternoon. The hope was to dodge between the showers and stay dry, this was pretty much accomplished and with the added sunshine it made for a nice half an hour. Hopefully I can get out onto Dartmoor tomorrow (Sunday) although the forecast is pretty poor.

Heybrook Bay and Wembury Point

A short walk today in some decent weather. Parking in Heybrook Bay and heading up past HMS Cambridge and then down to join the SW Coastal Path and then back to Heybrook Bay. The area around HMS Cambridge has been sold by the MOD to the National Trust which is great news as this is…

Lee Moor

Storm Katie was due to hammer Britain this Easter weekend, however the worst of it seemed to miss the south west. The winds were brisk but not horrible, and when Sunday came and the skies had some blue in them I decided a walk was in order. Unfortunately the weather in Plymouth is not the…

Setters Rocks

This walk was pretty much over similar ground to Sunday’s walk, only I headed round to Roos Tor and past Cox Tor, instead of going towards Lynch Tor this time. The weather was absolutely superb, warm enough for just a t shirt and a bit of a tan!!! It was a shame I couldn’t lengthen…

Standon Hill and Lynch Tor

It had been such a good week, weather wise, and it seemed right to get out again for another long walk. This one allowed for some new tops for me as well as an old favourite. Unfortunately the weather, whilst dry, was absolutely bitter and a reminder that spring isn’t quite here yet!! I’d also…

Brisworthy Stone Circle

Not a great deal of spare time today but we managed a quick walk out to Brisworthy Stone Circle and back. It was absolutely bitter in the wind and compared to last week’s t shirt weather, it was a bit of a shock. I guess it is only March after all!! It’s only a 15 minute…

Leeden Tor

The weather was good, me and the boys had eaten lunch and a quick stroll was in order. Despite the youngest’s protests!! Leeden Tor is barely a 10 minute walk up from the busy car parks on the B3212 but the views up to Cox Tor, the Staple Tors and Princetown are brilliant. Especially if…

All around Foxtor Mires

First walk on Dartmoor for a few weeks and an area I haven’t been to before and too be honest not one I’ll rush back to. The area around Foxtor Mires is excellent, although not to be messed with as it is horrendously boggy. However once on Ter Hill the ground is heavy going and…

Ditsworthy Warren House

The weather was decent and i had time for a quick walk out to Ditsworthy Warren House. The walk isn’t more than a 40 minute stroll and covers hardly any distance really. Having been in the Lakes the previous week it was good to be back on home turf, shame I didn’t have time to…

Whinlatter

I needed one walk in The Lakes before the long drive back to Devon, nothing too far in distance but enough to stretch the legs, some snow would be a nice way to round off a good few days in this lovely part of the world. Whinlatter fitted the bill, in that it was a…

Ling Fell

Nearing the end of my stay in the Lakes and the weather has turned a little, meaning just two more short walks before I leave. Ling Fell is a very simple walk from any direction and is perfect for a day when cloud covers the higher fells, or you need a quick walk to keep…

Back O’Skiddaw

Whilst in the Lakes I really wanted to do a wintry walk. Something with snow, cold conditions and maybe a need for some microspikes. Nothing that difficult that requires an ice axe and crampons but enough to give me a flavour and some experience in these conditions. Dartmoor can be bleak however lots of snow…

Around Buttermere

If there’s a better simpler low level walk in the UK than this one then feel free to let me know. A few miles, a bit of woodland, cascading streams, a large lake, a tunnel and a cracking village with a couple of pubs and a couple of coffee shops. It is a fabulous place to…

Crag Fell and Lank Rigg

More time up in the Lake District this week and a chance for some winter walking. This first one however wasn’t full on snow, just a bit of frost and ice on the paths and a fresh wind. These three fells make an excellent round and the views from Crag Fell along Ennerdale are some…

A quick walk around Crockern Tor

Finally the weather turned, after a horrible Saturday with high winds and heavy rain, Sunday broke with blue skies. Another storm was heading in from the Atlantic bringing more horrible stuff so a quick walk was needed this morning. I headed to Two Bridges and took advantage of the easy walk up to Crockern Tor…

Wild Tor and Watern Tor

First big walk of 2016, the weather was set fair for the majority of the day (more of that later), so I decided to head east to new territory around Fernworthy Forest and Scorhill. I planned to do the loop in reverse from my actual walk but I wanted to see the ruin at Teignhead…

Around Cotehele

A day off work but not the best weather, I decided not to head up to Dartmoor but instead to head to a National trust property and do a loop around the grounds. I chose Cotehele mainly because there it at least some tree cover in case the forecasted rain fell. As it was, the…

A bit of snow on Foggin Tor

Well there was a bit of snow on Dartmoor, however with things to do on a Saturday morning it was mid afternoon before we got up to it. A lot had melted, some made into snowmen and enough thrown at me by my boys!!! It was a bit of fun, a short walk and a…

Mel Tor in the sun

The weather said it should be decent with rain coming in after lunch, so a quick walk was devised from Bel Tor corner over to Mel Tor and then along the Two Moors Way, returning back along the road through Poundsgate. It was lovely to be out and the bonus was the  weather was even…