Author Topic: Dartmoor Trip Advice  (Read 2264 times)

skightley

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Dartmoor Trip Advice
« on: 08:36:25, 18/07/17 »
Hi guys,


I am thinking of trying to get down to Dartmoor for a long weekend (Friday - Sunday / Friday - Monday sort of thing). I was wondering if I could pick your brains on any good routes or suggestions. I think I am going to have to start in Ivybridge as thats the only station that I can get to and onto the moor easily. Then I was thinking just head north to Prince town (Stop by the Plume and Feathers of course!) then turn around and come back a bit of a different way.


Any thoughts would be really helpful :)

DevonDave

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Re: Dartmoor Trip Advice
« Reply #1 on: 16:47:37, 18/07/17 »
From Ivybridge you could follow the River Erme upstream and head to the village of Harford, and from there access the moor at Harford Moor Gate.  Then head north to Piles Copse, cross the river and proceed approximately north west to Stalldown Barrow, Yealm Steps, Shavercombe Head, Eylesbarrow Mine, Nun's Cross, South Hessary Tor & Princetown. 
For the return route, head out of Princetown to Whiteworks, then skirt around the western edge of Foxtor Mires (take great care here - you don't want to head into the mire), then follow the green broken line on the OS map to pick up the Abbot's Way at Dry Lake Ford.  (Note that this path is not always in existence on the ground).  From Dry Lake Ford turn east along the Abbot's Way to arrive at an old disused railway track that comes down from Redlake.  (This is known locally as the Puffing Billy Track).  Follow this track (which also forms the Two Moors Way) as far as the point where the Two Moors Way leaves the track, then follow the Two Moors Way back to Ivybridge.


I hope this helps.  It's not easy to describe the route but if you follow it on the OS 1:25,000 map you should be able to see it clearly.


EDIT:  Bear in mind that not many inter-city trains stop at Ivybridge.  You may have to change at Exeter.
« Last Edit: 17:29:51, 18/07/17 by DevonDave »

Wurz

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Re: Dartmoor Trip Advice
« Reply #2 on: 19:53:37, 18/07/17 »
Dave's choice of going up the Erme/Yealm makes a change from going up and down the old tramway.  But I see no point in walking into Harford.  The station is at the top of the hill anyway so you may as well get on the moor straight away at Stowford Bridge (2 moors way) and once on open moor contour around to Harford Moor Gate.
Be aware the Abbots Way is pretty non-existent on the ground.  Also if you choose to follow Black Lane (s of Fox Tor to Duck's Pool) it's very wet underfoot.


Starting from Ivybridge always limits choice and tends to being an out and back route.  Have you looked at transport options from Plymouth?  Only 10-15 minutes more on the train, plus a lot more trains stop there.  then get a bus to Yelverton (any Tavistock service) they run at least hourly.  A quick pint in the Rock and then some lane walking to Burrator Reservoir.  from there there are plenty of quite impressive tors either side to ultimately get you to Princetown.  You can then return via Ivybridge.


The scenery on the western fringe/Meavy valley far surpasses the pretty bland open moorland between Ivybridge and the Plym.

thomasdevon

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Re: Dartmoor Trip Advice
« Reply #3 on: 21:53:50, 18/07/17 »
This all sounds brilliant - maybe I'll have to try the south moor.

DevonDave

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Re: Dartmoor Trip Advice
« Reply #4 on: 22:29:26, 18/07/17 »
But I see no point in walking into Harford.  The station is at the top of the hill anyway so you may as well get on the moor straight away at Stowford Bridge (2 moors way) and once on open moor contour around to Harford Moor Gate.


Yes I take your point Wurz, that would make more sense.  The reason I suggested going to Harford was to make the outward journey different to the return, and it's a pleasant walk up through the woods following the Erme.

skightley

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Re: Dartmoor Trip Advice
« Reply #5 on: 07:57:25, 19/07/17 »
Thank you all very much for your help. I have just plotted both of those routes on the map and they look perfect - far better than what I was thinking originally of going up the Tramway to Princetown, turn right to Dartmeet and somehow head south back to Ivy Bridge, your routes are far better.


I'm thinking that when the route gets to dry lake ford, head off the path south the the settlement and pick up the path following the Erme.... though saying that it does look like it would take me straight through a bog.


Out of interest, how boggy is it? Are we talking 'Scotland and gaiters' job? I know I supervised a DofE group in Exmoor a month or so ago and how dry it was took me by surprise. Im thinking of going as light and basic as I can just with a bivvi bag, roughing it for a few days would be a pleasant change.

DevonDave

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Re: Dartmoor Trip Advice
« Reply #6 on: 08:47:37, 19/07/17 »
No, when you get to Dry Lake Ford go east to Red Lake Ford then south east to pick up the Puffing Billy Track.  (That is the track shown on the map heading south from Redlake clay works).  It's then an easy walk down the track to Ivybridge.  This is why I suggested the walk in this direction, because you will get the more difficult terrain over with in the first half and it's then plain sailing on the Puffing Billy Track.


Regarding ground conditions, I always wear gaiters on the moor.  You will encounter boggy areas, particularly if there has been heavy rainfall previously, but with care you can always find a way around it.