High Moor Link Section 2: Hexworthy to Tavistock — the Dartmoor Way
Includes an off-grid segment
Navigation instructions may be limited.
Kit P planned a hike.
December 8, 2020
12 miles (19 km) of pure, unadulterated moorland, this new stage of the Dartmoor Way provides sweeping views of this breathtaking national park and takes you through its very heart. You’ll spot Dartmoor ponies, granite tors and all manner of ancient remnants on your hike. As you’ll be starting high, at Hexworthy, there’s only 825 feet (251 m) of elevation gain and double that of descent, heading downhill mostly in the last half.
Starting in Hexworthy, you’ll stride out directly onto the moor and this means that being adequately prepared for changeable weather and poor visibility is important. Dartmoor can be glorious sunshine and then thick fog, all in the same day. Hiking out from Hexworthy offers stunning views of Bellever Tor before heading down to cross the River Swincombe at the Fairy Bridge.
Ascending up the side of Royal Hill, the moor’s real character emerges here and the views are far and wide with little to obstruct them. Part of this section is a more defined track, built by conscientious objectors during the First World War, imprisoned at the looming Dartmoor Prison at Princetown.
Speaking of which, you’ll reach this charming Dartmoor village and can make the most of its lunch stop glory. From cafés and pubs to benches with views, this is an ideal place to pause. Continuing, the next section affords excellent views of tors like Sheep’s, Leather, Sharp and King’s. You’ll hike along footpaths, lanes and commons from here to reach the old market town of Tavistock, where this Tour ends.
Tavistock has plenty of accommodation options, shops and bus links to Plymouth where you can hop on a mainline train to Exeter, Bristol and further afield. Princetown is the only stop on this Tour that has food options before Tavistock, so snack planning is important.
December 16, 2020