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The Joys of Winter Walking
I’ve spent one too many days gazing forlornly out at the lashing rain and cursing the jet stream (although I realise I shouldn’t complain too much as the house is warm and dry, and my surroundings unflooded). Then last Thursday a couple of intrepid German visitors were determined to spend the whole day walking on Dartmoor, so we spent over six hours walking in continuous rain through soggy peat and puddles, with just a lunch break in the cozy bar of the Cleave at Lustleigh to allow the outer layers to dry off a little. At the end of it, I felt a whole lot better than I would have done watching the weather through my office window, and made a resolution to embrace the elements more - whatever they might throw at me.
This Sunday I and my nine companions got to experience a truly elemental walk up around Bellever and Laughter Tors. We went from sunshine to horizontal hail and wind, to more sunshine with wind, to clear blue skies, and finally to snow. Just about everything in fact – except rain. We had our lunch in the historic sheep pen on Laughter Tor where the beautifully constructed dry stone walls provided an excellent wind break. As we descended the hill into Postbridge, the sun came out again and sparkled in the light dusting of snow. Not quite the Alps, but a reminder of how beautiful the winter elements can be – and all less than a 30-minute drive away.
More pictures here