And so it came to pass, after trying to organise, off and on, a walk over Dartmoor to cover the mediaeval boundary of 1280 or so for at least five years – at last, this month, July of 2008, Fred, Andy and I were in a position to try it.
We set off early-ish on Tuesday. the -ish part was due to having to drive a car to Princetown so that we had a vehicle to walk to. But delivering it and driving back held us up somewhat.
Still, off we toddled, up Cawsand, and along to head for Ivy Tor Water, where we’d go due west to Cullever Steps. Yes, boring, I know. Sadly, my daughter, who was desperately keen to join us, grew more than a little distressed, and we had to make a detour to Belstone to drop her off with my wife before continuing.
Now all this would have been fine on a cool, pleasant day. It wasn’t. I don’t take photos in the wet – mainly because I don’t want the camera to catastrophically fail – but take it from me, I’ve hardly ever seen weather like it, even on the moors. The rain was blowing so horizontally, it didn’t make a splash on the puddles. It just flew over them and straight into us.
Luckily we were prepared. I’ve taken to a military style poncho. All I have to do is push my head through the head-hole, and drape the thing over my front and back, and hey-presto! Camera and camera bag are covered and protected. Fred, the cool one in some kind of black, paramilitary or fetishistic uniform, was in fact perfectly dry from the rain. The clever materials he wore stopped any rain getting to him – although he confessed to feeling lightly steamed by the impact of his own sweat!
Andy, however, wore jeans and a cotton shirt. He got drenched!
On we went, from Cullever to Yes Tor, thence to Higher Willhays, before heading more or less due south.
This picture was taken from our most southerly point on the walk, somewhere near Sandy Ford. After this, we headed east to Dinger Tor, then took some trails circuitously to Steeperton, Metheral, Little Hound, and home. It was a great day, but . . . Still aching now, two days later.
Must get up there more!