Stage 7: Okehampton to Lydford — the Dartmoor Way
Includes an off-grid segment
Navigation instructions may be limited.
Kit P planned a hike.
December 8, 2020
At around 10 miles long (16 km), this hike leaves Okehampton and wanders about Dartmoor’s wild and rugged north-western edge before meandering off through fields and into the pretty little village of Lydford. The elevation gain isn’t considerable and the climb up from stunning Meldon Viaduct presents you with excellent views to Dartmoor’s highest points. This is a rural walk with little in the way of settlements en route.
Okehampton is a particularly easy place to start, thanks to the town centre’s buses, accommodation and supermarkets. Once stocked up, you’ll hike out to the west but do pause at Okehampton’s Norman castle first and admire the impressive ruins. The Dartmoor Way cuts across the A30 after a stretch and leads you to a disused railway and the Granite Way route.
Crossing Meldon Viaduct provides lovely views up to the dam and the moor, which is more or less where you’ll be heading. The trail leaves the Granite Way not long after the viaduct and splits to the south-west. The track turns to gravel which turns to open moorland and the going is rougher from here across the moor, towards Sourton Tors.
From this section of the Dartmoor Way, you’ll enjoy views to High Willhays and Yes Tor, the highest points in the national park. The moor is rugged and windblown up here so be mindful of changeable weather.
Fields and pretty countryside take up the rest of your walk and before you know it, you’ll be in charming Lydford with its Norman castle. Here you’ll find pubs and a select few B&Bs. You can also wild camp in certain places nearby to the west and south.
December 14, 2020