This was the second ‘Big Walk’ organised by the Two Moors Way Association (following the inaugural walk from Wembury to Ivybridge back in April) and once again attracted a wide range of walkers – some affiliated to Ramblers groups, others independent but interested in being part of a group tackling this wonderful route together.
As before, we assembled at The Watermark Centre before boarding minibuses that took us – and a smaller group who intended to complete the walk at a faster pace – to our start point beside the 500-year-old ‘new’ bridge across the River Dart. The walk begins with a charming passage through the woods, with the river in sight and sound, then heads up into the village of Holne where the community shop (and – shortly – the Church House Inn as well) is a stamping station for those who have a Two Moors Way passport. Our next stop, around 2.5 miles later, was at Chalk Ford after making the long ascent from the village of Scoriton. We resisted the temptation to take our boots off and dip our feet in the crystal-clear water, and took a brief drinks break before carrying on the long climb over Buckfastleigh Moor towards Huntingdon Cross where we enjoyed lunch beside the Avon.
Rested and refreshed we then climbed up to Crossways where we joined the Red Lake railway trackbed – to be followed for around 5 miles until we left the Moor and descended towards our destination. Throughout much of the time on the old trackbed – looking south and west – we saw the sun shining on Plymouth Sound, as well as lots of signs of earlier activity on the Moor, whether in the relatively recent past (associated with china clay workings) or much further back in time (stone rows).
Crossing Stowford Bridge over the railway line to Plymouth and beyond, the character of our walk changed as we entered the fringes of Ivybridge to arrive at our destination.
‘When is Big Walk 3?’