Dartmoor National Park Favorites

  • Orion
    Orion
    by johngayton
  • Cassiopeia
    Cassiopeia
    by johngayton
  • Typical Dry-Stone Wall
    Typical Dry-Stone Wall
    by johngayton

Most Recent Favorites in Dartmoor National Park

  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Dartmoor's Dark Skies

    by johngayton Written Nov 15, 2012
    Orion
    1 more image

    Favorite thing: With its sparse population and tracts of uninhabited moorland Dartmoor can be spectacularly lit-up on clear nights. Only the larger villages and towns have street lighting and so you don't even have to be too far out on the Moor to escape the light pollution of civilization.

    On a clear, moonless, night you will get the full array of constellations, planets and satellites spectacularly full-face against the backdrop of the cloudy ribbon of the Milky Way. A full moon creates an equally stunning effect that whilst it overpowers our galaxy it highlights the moorland, sometimes almost as bright as day.

    Unfortunately I'm still a naff nightime photographer but that's something that I'll be working on in the near future.

    Related to:
    • Photography
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Hiking and Walking

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  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Discover The Undiscovered Dartmoor!

    by johngayton Written Oct 7, 2010

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Here It Is!

    Favorite thing: Here's a press release I got in my mail box today from the Dartmoor National Park Authority:

    Granite cross discovered by walkers on Dartmoor

    "A previously unrecorded granite cross has been discovered by a group of walkers close to Great Nodden near Bridestowe on northern Dartmoor. Ron’s Ramblers - Ron Johns, Mike Smith, Bill Furneaux, Ed Squires and Peter Hodges - a group of former dockyard workers from Plymouth were enjoying one of their regular Dartmoor walks when they spotted the cross set into a corn ditch wall.

    Corn ditches originate from the time when Dartmoor was a royal hunting area and there was a need to keep the King’s deer out of the cultivated land. A stone revetted wall and external ditch faced onto the open moor which deterred deer and other animals from jumping over, whilst the sloping grassy bank on the inner face allowed those animals which had entered to exit again without difficulty.

    The wall, known as the King Wall, lies close to Great Nodden, along an ancient route known as the King Way.

    The cross is cut in relief on just one side. This is a method of carving where the design stands out from the surface in a raised fashion. The lower part of the cross shaft has broken off, but when complete it was most probably over 2 metres high. It is likely that this was once a wayside cross marking an ancient route.

    The King Way is the Tavistock to Okehampton section of the old coaching route between London to Plymouth along which the King’s Mail was taken.

    The King is believed to be Charles I and much of the route can still be found. However it is very probable that the route was in existence long before this period, and could be associated with Tavistock Abbey and Lydford; both of which have Saxon origins.

    Andrew Langdon, an expert on Cornish crosses, has looked at the cross and feels that it is probably post Conquest in date. The design of the cross is described as being Greek rather than Latin, which is a style much more commonly found in Cornwall than on Dartmoor.

    The cross has been temporarily removed to Dartmoor National Park Authority’s works yard whilst a new base is made for it by the Authority’s stone mason. It will then be returned and re-erected on the spot where it was discovered."

    What an amzing find!

    The DNPA send out regular press releases to subscribers who have an interest in The Moor and often these contain useful info and updates - to sign up visit the website: DNPA Website

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • National/State Park
    • Hiking and Walking

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  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Dry Stone Walling

    by johngayton Updated Jul 14, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Typical Dry-Stone Wall

    Favorite thing: Dartmoor has the UK's largest concentration of granite, much of which is exposed above ground level. This thus made granite the natural choice as a building material for pretty much everything including houses, churches and bridges ever since time immemorial.

    Another common use has been for wall-building to mark field boundaries and to line the roads and tracks. Here on The Moor most of the walling is "dry-stone" which means that no cement or mortar was used in the building and that the stones were chosen and/or shaped to achieve quite an amazingly regular construction.

    I don't know how many miles of dry-stone walls there are in the 368 square miles of the park but given that field sizes are rarely more than a couple of hundred yards in any direction that makes for a lot of granite and all hand-shifted and built.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

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  • iris2002's Profile Photo

    Dartmoor Park Authority & Rangers

    by iris2002 Written Nov 21, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    dartmoor ponies

    Favorite thing: Dartmoor Park Authority

    The purposes of the Dartmoor National Park Authority are to conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the National Park; and to promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of the area's special qualities by the public.

    Careful management is needed to ensure that these purposes do not conflict with each other. Your first contact with a National Park employee whilst visiting Dartmoor might well be by meeting one of our community based Rangers. Their key role on a daily basis is providing a vital communications link between the Authority, local residents and visitors.

    The Authority employs specialists in ecology, woodlands, archaeology, historic buildings, information and interpretation as well as planners and administrators. They are supported by seasonal information assistants, guides, voluntary wardens and other volunteers engaged in practical work.

    We all need to act with Moor Care to safeguard Dartmoor for the future. The National Park Authority relies on the co-operation of all who live, work and visit Dartmoor to help safeguard its special qualities for the present and future generations.

    Ranger Service

    Your first contact with a National Park employee whilst visiting Dartmoor might well be by meeting one of our community based Rangers. They each have a sector that covers many parishes and although responsibilities and priorities vary slightly each Ranger is an identifiable person representing the National Park Authority on the ground.
    Each Ranger is supported by local Voluntary Wardens, who assist with community based projects, particularly those with a strong conservation and educational message.

    And in case you ever come across a tall guy who looks a bit like "Buffallo Bill" - that'll be my new pal Bill - the Park Ranger and mostly accompanied by his faithful dog Rosie.

    Fondest memory: ohhhhhh tooo many to mention - but I must say that I absolutely ADORE the wild dartmoor ponies :) such lovely fuzzy creatures, and they come in all colours :)

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Road Trip
    • Arts and Culture

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  • freya_heaven's Profile Photo

    Moorland Walk

    by freya_heaven Updated Dec 22, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Me, Dartmoor

    Fondest memory: At the time this was the worst day I had experienced on Dartmoor, but looking back it is an amusing memory to have.

    A few years ago Derek did an orienteering course. One time they did it on Dartmoor at night time, so Derek wanted to return & walk it during the day to see where they actually went to.

    I agreed to do the walk with him deep in to the moorland off the beaten track. It was the coldest day I have ever experienced, the wind chill factor coming over the hills was just incredible. I have never been so cold before or since & consequenty hated every minute of it. The amusing part is we met at the car park beforehand Derek has his gaters, survival kit, maps, compass etc, a true professional. I turned up with my hairbrush!

    (~_~)

    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking
    • National/State Park

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  • freya_heaven's Profile Photo

    9th August 1996

    by freya_heaven Updated Dec 22, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Derek & I, Just Engaged!

    Fondest memory: I have so many wonderful memories of Dartmoor, having visited many times over the years. The most special has to be Derek & I getting engaged at one of the reservoirs on the moor. We used to have a campervan (RV) & at least once a week even for just 1 night we would get away in it, usually up to Dartmoor. So it made sense us getting engaged up there. Very happy times..........................

    (~_~)

    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • National/State Park

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