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topsyrm’s latest blog : 52 for 2021 week 37 dartmoor photowalk over 2 days

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52 for 2021 Week 37 Dartmoor Photowalk over 2 Days

19 Sep 2021 11:07AM  
Views : 82
Unique : 72

This week’s Dartmoor excursion(s) was in 2 parts. They took us first to Sharpitor Leather Tor (inc Farm and Bridge) and Black Tor plus the Falls on Tuesday, we had intended to take in Leeden Tor and Ingra Tor but ran out of time so Mrs T and I went out again on Friday to finish the walk plus get some shots along the old Princetown Railway.

Ingra Tor.

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Leather Tor.

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On day 1 Mrs T and I were joined by our friend Jonathan, we set off from the car park below Leeden Tor out over Sharpitor on to Peek Hill.

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The views as always on the high moor were fantastic but today they were marred by haze and low cloud.
Leather Tor with Sheeps Tor in the distance.

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Sharpitor is a very rocky Tor but has very interesting rock formations.

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This Crow posed for me nicely.

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There were good views of Burrator Reservoir from Peek Hill.

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On to Leather Tor which is massive and would need several hours exploring to do it justice.

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We didn’t have the time for a full exploration as we were headed for the old Farm and Bridge. The way off Leather Tor was along a well marked path that seemed little used so we had to do a bit of Fern bashing to get through.

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Eventually we arrived at Leather Tor Farm (ruins), it seems that they were vacated to facilitate the construction of Burrator Reservoir.

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From there it was just a short walk to the Bridge where we took a lunch break.

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After Leather Tor Bridge we set off through Raddick Plantation destined for Black Tor Falls via the Devenport Leat.

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The Aqueduct was our jump off point.

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Once at Black Tor Falls I set up the Bronica SQ-Ai in the hopes of getting some Pano shots on Fuji Provia 100.

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I was looking for something like these (shot on the Fuji X-T2 as well as the film, film is not back from developing yet)

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After the Falls we headed up the Tor in search of it’s Logan Stone.

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On this trip we did see ponies.

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We then headed back to the cars as it was getting late for Jonathan’s drive back to Cornwall.

Mrs T and I decided to go back out on Friday to get the rest of the planned shots plus some interesting sights on the old Princetown Railway (now a Cycle Track/Footpath).

We started out from the same car park but went North up Leeden Tor through the settlements.

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From here we went up to the main Tor.

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Once again the views were stunning from the high ground.

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From Leeden Tor it is a fairly easy walk down to Ingra Tor.

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Ingra Tor has what looks like a small quarry but it could well be a natural feature.

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From here we went down to the old Railway.

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When it was a railway track, it would not have been easy to drive stock across therefore there seem to be bridges to facilitate this (since there is no discernible track to or away from this one.

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What appears to be a track peters out quickly on both sides.

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Water also needs to get under the track.

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It must have taken some engineering to build the railway track, there are plenty of areas where they had to either dig through or build up to keep a reasonably level track.

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Up towards Swelltor Quarries there is an old stopping point and you can see the old platform. There are several ruins in this area, presumably buildings for the many workers for the nearby Quarries (Swelltor and Foggintor).

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That’s all for this week folks, as always comments welcome.

Tags:
Dartmoor
Landscape and travel
Photowalk
Devon History

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topsyrm’s latest blog : 52 for 2021 week 36 mad dogs and englishmen

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52 for 2021 Week 36 Mad Dogs and Englishmen

12 Sep 2021 11:12AM  
Views : 170
Unique : 153

This week’s Dartmoor jaunt took us to Watern Tor in search of the Thurlstones then on to Scorhill Circle. This week I was not joined by Mrs T but I did have a friend along for the walk, Jonathan.

Scorhill Circle.

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The Thurlstones.

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We started out from the car park at Batworthy Corner.

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Just before you reach the car park there is an old pound on the side of the road known as Round Pound, I thought as I had arrived a bit early I may as well walk back to it for a shot.

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As you can see from these early pictures the weather wasn’t the best for photography with clear blue skies and haze that comes with temps of 23 degrees. It was going to be a hard walk out to Watern Tor.

We headed out to the corner and picked up a convenient Quad Bike track that I had been told about by the local National Park Ranger (thanks Serina). It wasn’t long before we got out first real sight of Watern Tor through the haze.

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A closer look sees the steep climb up the wall to the Tor, no Everest but a straight 750m climb from the corner with the heat of the midday sun approaching 23 degrees.

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Looking back towards Batworthy Corner you can see how bland and wilderness like this area is.

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Once at the top of the climb we could see the top of the Tor a short walk away along the well trodden path.

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Watern Tor is a very impressive tor and well worth the effort to get to it. It has amazing rock formations including those famous Thurlstones.

Main Tor.

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The Thurlstones from an unusual angle.

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The more common angle for the Thurlstones.

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And from the other side.

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Some of the rock formations.

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After a lunch break on Watern Tor we headed back towards Batworthy corner, back down the long hill.

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Following the wall back we had to cross the North Teign River (as we had done on the outbound but I didn’t take any photos).

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Fortunately there is an easy crossing on the rocks with the metal fence as a handrail, this shot after crossing the river.

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Once clear of the river we found another Quad Bike track to take us back towards Batworthy Corner (or so we thought).

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We followed the track but it became evident that we were not on the same track as outbound, no problem though as it provided photo opportunities that we hadn’t had on the way out (it was a Photowalk after all).

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The whole way back we could see where we had been and those Thurlstones in the distance. By now there were some nice clouds forming that would prove useful for both photography and cooling the temperature a bit.

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We eventually found our original track and a left turn jump off point that took us down to the Clapper Bridges across the Teign and Wallabrook just below the Scorhill Circle.

Teign –e- Ver Clapper Bridge

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Wallabrook Clapper Bridge.

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From here we could still see Watern Tor in the distance.

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It was now only a short walk up the track to the Scorhill Circle.

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On the way back to the cars we set about to find a stone with a hole in it that is known as the Tolmen Stone, it is said to have healing powers and if you can bathe in it’s waters when they are coming through the hole in high waters it will heal all ills (or something like that). No such luck for us, this weather was not going to give high waters.

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The North Teign River was very low today.

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And on the very last leg of the walk…………………..

Ponies.

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That’s all for this week folks.

As always, comments are welcome.

Tags:
Dartmoor
Photowalk
Scorhill Circle
Watern Tor Thurlstones
Tolmen Stone

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topsyrm’s latest blog : 52 for 2021 week 33 another dartmoor photowalk

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52 for 2021 Week 33 Another Dartmoor Photowalk

22 Aug 2021 10:49AM  
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Unique : 13

This week’s Dartmoor jaunt saw us heading out from Batworthy Corner near Chagford, out past several Stone Rows then past Fernworthy Forrest over the ancient Clapper Bridge to Teigh Head Farm derelicts. I was not joined this week by Mrs T but had a friend along for the walk, Jonathan.

Stone Rows on Shovel Down.

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The walk started from the parking area at the end of the long single track road to Batworthy Corner.

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Past a Rowan Tree which sat in the edge of the farm enclosure.

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Our strike off point was the corner of the enclosure.

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At the edge of the enclosure we met a dog walker who told us of a track leading from Kestor Rock (seen in the distance)out to the Forrest, we chose to ignore this as it seemed a huge detour. So we set off on a straight route heading for some Settlements. The going was very tough through tussock grass and progress was slow. We also had wind in our faces carrying rain (not good for photography since I knew all my intended shots were into wind).

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We pressed on heading for the Forrest but eventually gave in to the tussock grass and went to find the dog walker’s track. (Note to self don’t ignore local advice).

The spots on this image are raindrops, this was a constant problem throughout the outbound walk and on site at the farm.

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The track led us to a gate in the dry stone wall.

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We passed a memorial stone on the way dedicated to a Royal Marine RSM (Steve Perry) who died in 1992 whilst supervising a 30 Mile March which is one of the Commando Tests that RM Recruits have to pass in order to gain their coveted Green Beret.

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We finally saw our target which was the derelict farm surrounded by trees.

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The way over was via the ancient Clapper Bridge in the foreground.

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The area has some interesting stone wall enclosures.

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Once over the Clapper Bridge we headed up the track to the farm.

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Up to the main gateway.

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This is quite a large farm complex.

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After lunch at the farm it was time to start back, via the Clapper Bridge again.

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As we made our way back the 2 ½ miles to the cars the weather started to brighten up.

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Unfortunately time was against us so we had to move on, this time we chose the track heading for Kestor Rock, the going was much easier. The small tree in the upper left of this image was the point where outbound we decided to find the dog walker’s track.

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We came to a track junction that led us left back towards the cars rather than having to go up to Kestor Rock.

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There were some Stone Rows on the last bit of the route.

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Sadly though no Ponies or other wildlife showed themselves so I went out on Saturday to see if I could find some wildlife more local to me.

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That’s all for this week folks.

Tags:
Dartmoor
Royal marines
Photowalk
Teign Head Farm

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topsyrm’s latest blog : 52 for 2021 week 31 an experiment with film panos

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52 for 2021 Week 31 An Experiment with Film Panos

8 Aug 2021 10:17AM  
Views : 103
Unique : 94

This week accompanied by Mrs T I revisited the areas of the Miniscule Sausage Area (Snappers Tor) Down Tor and the Stone Row then went along to Combshead Tor. From there we followed the old settlements to the Tinner’s Huts at Deancombe before returning to the car via Middleworth Farm. On this trip I wanted to test a new setup I had fabricated for my Bronica SQ-Ai to do panoramic shots on 120 square film. I also took the opportunity to explore the rock formations on Down Tor a little more since last week I was more pushed for time having to navigate new ground.

Down Tor Rock Formations.

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PANO of The Miniscule Sausage Area (aka Snappers Tor) shot with the Bronica on Portra 400.

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We set off from the Norsworthy Bridge Car Park again.

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On the way up to The Miniscule Sausage Area (MSA) there were miniscule Mushrooms (to go with the miniscule Sausages).

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Further up towards Down Tor the rocks were littered with Sheep.

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There were some impressive rock formations on Down Tor.

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With a view back over the MSA on to Burrator Reservoir, we waited but no good light fell on the res so we moved on.

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Eventually we arrived at the Down Tor Stone Row where I had always intended to set up my Bronica to shoot a PANO of the row.
I have made a mask for the focussing screen so I can view the panorama as a PANO using just the middle section of the frame, I then use that middle section as my crop in Lightroom to make my final shot (I actually used a 40mm lens not the 50 in the photo).

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The Shot of the stone row Portra 400 (oh for some decent light!!).

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The original full frame square.

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The set up.

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A shot of me at work taken by Mrs T, I needed the elevation to get separation. I will revisit this location in search of better light.

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And here is the shot I was taking on the Fuji X-T2.

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Having lunched and waited in vain for good light we set off towards Combshead Tor and the settlements.

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Having negotiated the Clitter around Combshead and the Settlements

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We arrived at the Tinner’s Huts at Deancombe

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They are long since derelict and Mother Nature is reclaiming the land.

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The area has some impressive trees.

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Some are storm damaged but impressive none the less.

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I decided that this one was worth a shot on film so set up for a PANO.

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The original square frame.

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The PANO.

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This area has loads of potential but we needed to press on following directions on a rather convenient signpost.

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Middleworth Farm was our next stop and for sure it was getting a film shoot.

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So I set up again, photographed once more by Mrs T.

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The original square frame.

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The PANO.

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From Middleworth Farm we headed back to the Car Park, I had one more shot left so I went to the actual Norsworthy Bridge for that final shot.

Original square frame.

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The PANO.

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And just in case you thought I’d forgot, Ponies…………

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That’s all for this week folks.

Tags:
Dartmoor
Landscape and travel
Photowalk
Bronica SQ-Ai
Film Panorama

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topsyrm’s latest blog : 52 for 2021 week 29

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52 for 2021 Week 29

25 Jul 2021 10:19AM  
Views : 14
Unique : 13

This week’s jaunt took in the Prehistoric Stone Rows at Merrivale then we climbed Kings Tor before moving on to the hidden jewel that is Swelltor Quarries before moving on to the more popular Foggintor Quarries.

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We parked at the Rundlestone car park (the copse in the distance in the photo above) which is surrounded by trees that gave us some welcome shade given the day was one of the hottest so far this year.

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We set off for the Stone Rows, Vixen and Pew Tor can be seen in the distance.

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From here we headed out to Kings Tor, Kings Tor has a lot of Clitter surrounding it and the route up was…… interesting.

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The Clitter was home to several birds, Wheatears mainly.

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Kings Tor itself had some interesting Rock Formations.

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As have many of the Dartmoor Tors Kings Tor has a lone tree.

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On this trip I was also carrying an old Yashica TLR loaded with Kodak Tri-X so I shot the tree on film.

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From Kings Tor we set off for Swelltor Quarries a proper hidden gem.

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But popular with Climbers.

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It has the remains of the old Mine Captains house still distinguishable.

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Swelltor Quarries are bigger than the map gives credit for with several “annexes”

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And a water feature.

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From here we headed over to Foggintor Quarries which is a much more known of and popular spot with easy access from the car park nearer Princetown.

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There were several groups of people BBQs Tents swimming the whole package for a hot summer’s day, it was difficult to find shots not full of people.

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Foggintor also has it’s ruined Captains house right next to the approach track.

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I took the opportunity to shoot it on film as well. Yashica and Tri-X.

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Foggintor had it’s share of birdlife, again mostly Wheatears (there were Stonechats but they wouldn’t pose for me).

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Oh and the ubiquitous Dartmoor Ponies were abundant.

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From here we wended our way back to the cars.

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The way back started easy along the Foggintor track.

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Once we passed Yellowmead Farm the going got a bit rougher.

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Water features were abundant as we crossed the rough ground.

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That’s all for this week folks.

Tags:
Devon
Dartmoor
Landscape and travel
Photowalk
Foggintor Quarries Dartmoor

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topsyrm’s latest blog : 52 for 2021 week 20

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52 for 2021 Week 20

23 May 2021 11:37AM  
Views : 36
Unique : 33

This week saw us out on North Dartmoor heading out from Meldon Reservoir out to Black a Tor and the Copse of ancient stunted Oaks. We knew rain was forecast but went anyway, waterproofs doned and heads down fortunately the wind and rain was at our backs for most of the way so I was able to get some photos.

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Meldon Dam.

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Meldon Viaduct from the edge of the Dam.

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The Tor.

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Some of the trees in the woods, there were so many that had character.

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We went down to the West Okement river and followed it to the reservoir then back to the car park.

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Tags:
Dartmoor
Devon uk
Meldon reservoir
Photowalk

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