Author Topic: Dartmoor - looking for three day walking route with wild camping  (Read 1953 times)


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Am taking my son (13) on a wild camping trip to Dartmoor this summer (early Aug).  Am after an approx. 20 mile route that will take in the best that Dartmoor can offer over two nights.  Would prefer to stay away from the boggy and babies head areas!  Ideally need a route that includes interesting features and on routes that can test our nav skills.  Any suggestions would be much appreciated.


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Belstone is fine start for at north moor - large, free car park on N entry to village. Good dry tracks onto highest parts of moor - help progress and navigation.
The valleys run north-south so climbs can be easy as you like. The ends of the road networks are Dinger Tor or Okement / Hangingstone Hills, about 5m south and after these you're really in the wilds if you fancy exploring and making your own routes.
Great tors like Yes, Watern, Steeperton: incredible views.


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Having just returned from that exact area with my own boy it seemed to me that a lot of low flat ground was potentially marshy and especially any areas with streams shown on the map that were not running steep and relatively fast were very likely to be boggy. An easy rule of thumb seemed to be: anything that looks like it might be a nice flat place to camp is a bog!
Just to entertain your child, you have to suddenly vanish waist deep into a bog at some point on the trip, preferably in the last hour on a hot day though.

I'm looking at the map now to see if we could have avoided wet areas and I think we mostly could actually by sticking to the areas which have a a reasonable slope to them and avoiding the small streams in flatter areas, especially the ones that meander or fork. But even then there were surprise areas with no obvious cause on quite high ground. I'm guessing there are underlying rock bowls that fill up after rain or something. Our problem was that my son got tired into the second day and was reticent to climb much more thus forcing us to navigate flatter areas.

The hillocks though? Not sure how you'd do that other than by sticking to footpaths and roads which kind of kills your navigation practice.

I'll be interested to see what the Dartmoor locals/experts have to say.