Sunday, 23 March 2014

The best view on Dartmoor

In between decorating and waiting for furniture to be delivered, I grabbed a chance to get out on the moor.  I decided on Baggator for a trek up to Walkham Head and Fuges Post.  Although I'd planned a route out to Fur Tor, I had to admit defeat as I only had an afternoon to spare.

Surprisingly, there weren't many Ten Tor teams out training here.  The car park was empty.  The wind was steady but not too strong.  The climb up to Lynch Tor never fails to act as a warm up.  The walk over to the Walkham Head peat pass was predictably soggy underfoot.  On arrival, the heavens opened, with a hailstorm unwelcome.  I was aware that snow dusted these slopes yesterday morning, so counted my blessings that the clouds soon parted, and the sun was back out.  Over to Walkham Spur next.  One of the flagpoles that the Ministry of Defence intend to relocate and combine with lookout when the inevitable national byelaw review takes place.  With current public service cuts, this may still be a few years off.  

I have been out here many times in the past.  Whilst there are several places on the moor with impressive panoramic, intriguing or impressive vistas, I find this the best of all.  Sat at this rather lonely flagpole, I can see a great swathe of North moor, stretching from Hare Tor in the West, past Great Links and the Dunnagoats, Amicombe Hill, High Willhays, Great Kneeset and Fur Tor.  Dartmoor's highest, most remote and most wild land in one fine view.  My absolute favourite.

The return route took in Fuges Post, and the long walk down the Baggator Brook.  I decided to avoid the usual, well trodden path past the hut-at-the-gate below Lynch Tor.  Instead, I stuck close to the wall below Standon Hill.  Aware that access land was on the other side of the wall, I noticing the adit pictured and marvelled at how dry it was!

At WD29, I took my chance to dive through a gate and into the fields beyond.  Resorting to map reading this area, I found the track leading up to Brousentor Farm.  This metalled army track leads to the military operated Standon Farm.  I was soon able to rejoin the familiar path leading from Coffin Wood to Baggator, it was a short climb back to the car to complete an enjoyable afternoon on the moor.  

I am still 40-plus stamps away from a major letterboxing milestone - 15000 boxes.  I'd stand half a chance if I was able to attend the Meet next weekend, but I'll be back at work then.  Pity.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Devil makes work for idle hands 2

In a week when my new sofa is delivered - a pair of cosy chairs for you!  Found at Vitifer Mine.

No, they are not my handiwork!

Saturday, 15 March 2014

How novel

I'm not a big reader, but when looking for something to read, I tend towards travel guides and thrillers.  I was more than a little intrigued when I heard about a new novel featuring - amongst other things - Dartmoor letterboxing.  'The Secret Letterbox' is the latest book by writer John Kemp.  

The story follows the lives of triplets whose lives take dramatically different courses, only to, later in life find themselves drawn back together to confront fear, history and, yes, letterboxing.

Its a fantastic tale told at an engaging pace with plenty of  suspense.  The letterboxing element is both key and consistent throughout too.  References are made to Haytor and the Becka Brook.  It is obvious that the American author, now a Devon resident has done his research.

The book is available as a paperback or e-book.  More information via his website (

I'm looking forward now to Dartmoor based horror/comedy film 'Stag Hunt' due for release by Dog Face Films later this year...  A review to follow!