Thursday, 22 December 2011

Dartmoor Escape

So, the rucksack is, at long last, packed! All that is left is to get the final few hours of work out of the way tomorrow morning, then load up the car and set sail for Devon via the A303.

I have a weighty burden, a shade over 20kg, but that’s the price to pay for carrying 7 days worth of food, and winter clothing. The plan is simple; I’ve measured out a distance similar to that of the Overland Track, 67km, and I’m carrying everything I think I need for that journey next April. Dartmoor is a perfect place to practice, and if anything has rougher terrain than I will encounter in Tasmania. By the end, I reckon I’ll have a pretty good idea what works and what doesn’t.

Saturday 24th; I leave Belstone, at the top edge of the North Moor, and make my way over Yes Tor and High Willhays, descending to the West Okement Valley for a wild camp.

Sunday 25th; a short stride up over Sourton Tors and Great Links Tor before descending to pitch up at the Fox and Hounds Hotel.

Monday 26th; I’ll pick up the Lich Way and travel it to Broad Hole for another wild camp, somewhere near Conies Down Tor.

Tuesday 27th; Hit the bright lights of Princetown for a pitch at the Plume of Feathers where there are a couple of Jail Ales with my name on it!

Wednesday 28th; I venture out onto the south moor, crossing the River Plym, and another wild camp near Left Lake Mires.

Thursday 29th; A short hop, skip and a jump into Ivybridge, and the traverse from North to South complete.

With the Princetown Weather Forecast over the festive period, looking favourable, all bodes well for a pleasant trip.

Trip report, photo’s and maybe a video, when I return!

All that leaves me to say is “Happy holidays everyone!”


  1. Getting some training in by the looks of it?! I thought the Overland was 60 odd kms as well until I finished it and found out I'd walked 93! Something went wrong somewhere, but that's what the GPS was telling me. I guess most people get the ferry at Narcissus Hut which cuts out about 17 kms? I gave the boat a miss and walked around Lake St Clair. Oh yeah, I think all my little side-trips must have added up!

    Safe walking!

  2. That's the idea, Greg, but I'm pretty out of shape, so taking it on a day to day basis. With 98 days to go, I better get my arse into gear! The call of a power shower and a warm bed might get the better of me, though! :)

    Yeah, the full OT with side trips will probably be nearer 90k. I'm probably one of those bailing out at Narcissus, unless I am feeling up to cracking on to the hut at Echo Point.

  3. Have a good break Paul. Take something warming for Christmas lunch!

  4. Paul, that boat is hard to knock back! Lucky for me that when I was there the place was deserted, so to get the boat it would have cost me a fortune. Another 17 kms seemed preferable than shelling out more cash!

    Glad I did though as the Echo Point Hut on Lake St Clair is my favourite of all the huts on the Overland. It really is in a spectacular spot. I should write about it on my blog, but I'm years behind with my writing!

  5. Cheers Alan, apparently the Fox and Hounds is open on Christmas Day; so a warming whisky will be in order!

    Greg; go on, sell Echo Point to me, get writing! :)