Recently, I have been working in Plymouth, the city where I lived up until last summer, I love it here, so when I was offered a bit of temporary work, at a time when my freelance video work was a bit slow, I jumped at the chance to move back for a few weeks, stay with S (who still lives here) and spend my evenings by the sea and weekends on the moors. The first weekend, I popped back to London for a shoot, but on the 2nd weekend, nothing except a few walks, and lots of cosiness was planned.
We allowed ourselves a decent lie in after 2 weeks of very early starts, ate some eggs and then got on the road. It was snowing slightly in Plymouth (very rare occurrence) but we had high hopes for just a bit more snow on the moors. Dartmoor isn’t very far out of Plymouth, to reach the edge of it is about 20 minutes in the car and then you just keep going til you find a passing place to park up and walk from there, that’s what we usually do anyway as we always forget to look up walking routes. You can also get buses in from the city, I believe.
We headed towards Princetown, as it was an area neither of us had really explored before and as we got closer, it was clear that the snow was sticking up on the moors. Dartmoor is bleak, and cold and harsh but so so beautiful, the views stretch out towards the horizon, the wild ponies graze on the long yellow grasses, sheep can be seen in all directions and hikers climb the granite tors.
We drove through the town and then on a bit further before finding a spot to park in. The snow was starting to settle and the puddles were all freezing over. We were both so excited as we love snow and no matter what, I don’t think I’ll ever not be excited by snow. Even when I lived in snowy Montana, I never got tired of seeing the flakes flutter down on snow storm days. I guess it’s because it’s pretty rare where I grew up to get snow. Anyway, so after layering up with at least 7 layers each, including my favourite fleece lined leggings (they are so cosy that they deserve a mention!), and putting on our hiking boots, we headed out, and were greeted by many wild ponies on the grassland ahead.
I loved walking across the moorlands, with all the beautiful views (you could see the headlands of Plymouth) and even with the snow coming down and us freezing our faces off, it was gorgeous, and such a cool place to spend the day. I’ve always loved going to Dartmoor since I have lived in Plymouth, it’s so vast with so many places to explore.
We did have to head back to the car in a rush towards the end as we realised that my face had gone purple from the cold, and S’s lips were blue. Probably wasn’t the best adventure idea on the week when we had both had coughs/colds but we had fun adventuring across the tors. When we got home, we got cozy with hot chocolate, and both fell asleep pretty soon after.
This day on Dartmoor really reminded me of my time in Iceland last year, the yellow grasses, wild ponies and the snow was all reminiscent of the bleak but beautiful Icelandic landscape. Despite countless trips to Dartmoor during my time at uni, I had never been in deep mid winter. It was so cool to realise, that there is in fact, a landscape just as bleak and beautiful as Iceland right on my doorstep just waiting to be explored.
Have you ever visited Dartmoor? Where do you go to escape the city? Would love to hear about it! 🙂
The road that cuts through the moors, stretching all the way out ahead of us.
(Many rivers jumped over on this trip!)