One of my intentions for my family fitness and fun this year was to get us all out in nature on some Wild Walks exploring.
This weekends adventure took us to Dartmoor, Devon here in the south west of the United Kingdom.
We drove to the Two Bridges Hotel (postcode PL20 6QF) and parked in the old quarry car park opposite. From the car park you will see the sign (picture above) where you can follow a man made track to a farm house.
You then follow the path through the gorse bushes (to the right of the house) All this is about half a mile in distance. Then you will come to a place where the path splits follow it to the right and you will see the Tor ahead of you up the hill over rough moorland , there’s a gap in the boundary wall to pass through. This is the route we took first. It’s worth the detor , we actually did it by accident but you get a wonderful view from there, it was a happy accident and part of the adventure!
Crockern Tor has a history of being the centre of the Stannary Parliament for the surrounding areas this would have been where the local tin miners came to meet in the 15th and 18th centuries. The miners didn’t follow Westminster laws they were governed locally and this is where many a meeting and punishment is thought to have taken place.
Crockern Tor also has a legend; It is said to be the home of the Old Crockern who rode on a skeleton horse across the moorland , and kept his phantom hounds in Wistmans wood nearby.
When we went walking we arrived around 9:30am it was -1 and the wind was high, the ground was waterlogged but frozen. I can imagine on a more mild day it would be quite soaked and more difficult to walk on.
We then walked back down this hill to the boundary wall where we had passed through previously and instead of going through the gap we walked along the wall to the right (remember we are facing down hill at this point) when nearly to the end of the wall we were able to pick up a moorland path to Wistmans wood (SX 613770) if you had avoided the Tor and taken a Left on the path before where it splits you would have naturally come to this point. All you need to do now is follow the moodland path over a wooden stile and you will see the woodland in the distance.
In Wistmans Wood you will find a magical place where the dwarf Oaks trees grow barely taller than 5m high , with tangled and crooked branches and boulders all over the floor , it did take some navigating, it is almost impossible for ponies or cattle enter , my dog struggled a bit , I think this is probably why this ancient woodland had stayed in tact from animal destruction,
If you know what your looking for you can find more than 100 different species of lichen! Being January there were no leaves but it was still incredibly alive with life and very green!
Said to be one of the most haunted places on Dartmoor with legends of Pagan ritual , Dartmoor hounds , ghosts of travellers lost and the Devil. You’d be forgiven to be wary but I can honestly say I could not feel any fear at all. It was a beautiful, natural, peaceful place , sharing untouched nature, steaming with life and vibrancy. I will certainly be taking a visit again in the summer when possibly the dense coverage of leaves may give an all together different experience.
Our total Walk was around 6.37km and took us as a family of 4 adults and 4 children aged 14,8,6,3 approx 3hours. We had made ourselves soup and stopped in the woods to enjoy this, in this time as well.
A gentle walk back and we decided to go into the Two Bridges Hotel for Cream Tea and to sit by the fire to warm up. A beautiful , peaceful and dog friendly environment , with exceptional staff. I would highly recommend a visit here at any time .
A lovely day out do let me know your experience and if you visit yourself.
Linda Perry Holistic Practitioner💚Mum👩👧👦Wife💏Author📘Blogger. My mission to inspire others to live a healthy, happy & full life!