The area around Witheridge is an enchanting, often forgotten region of the County with many lightly wooded valleys associated with the path of the Little Dart River, and a variety of beautiful countryside scenes, rolling hills, hidden woodlands, and spectacular scenery. Everywhere you go you will see an amazing network of hedgerows that cross the landscape. The hedges of Devon are, along with those on Dartmoor, amongst the oldest in the country, dating back to the Bronze age in some cases. There is something to suit all tastes, with walks both long and short through an astonishing variety of scenery. Remote, majestic moorland; the gentle meanderings of a lovely river; timeless Devon lanes; softly rolling fields and hidden valleys; the ancient thatched cottages and oak-beamed pubs; and breath taking views of some of England's most spectacular coastal scenery.

The Two Moors Way

Running from Ivybridge on the southern edge of Dartmoor to Lynmouth on the north Devon coast of Exmoor, the Two Moors Way covers a distance of 103 miles as it links the two National Parks of Dartmoor and Exmoor. Between the moors lies the rich farmland of the Devon Heartland, an area of mid-Devon with sleepy villages of cob and thatch cottages and square towered churches. It is a walk of stunning contrasts. The southern part of the trail over the wild heather uplands of Dartmoor passes jagged granite tors, crosses and clapper bridges erected by monks in medieval times and a fantastic number of prehistoric remains, including cairns, kists, menhirs, barrows, stone rows and circles and a remarkable Bronze Age village. As well as crossing the high moors the trail meanders through the wooded valleys of the moorland fringes and visits many attractive villages. To the north the route crosses Exmoor through a landscape of steep- sided river valleys, rounded grassy hills and ancient oak woodland. Both moors are noted for their wildlife. Native wild ponies still roam both moors and Exmoor is home to the last of England's native red deer herds. The Two Moors Way coincides with the Tarka Trail for part of the route on Exmoor; links with the South West Coast Path at its northern end, and with the Little Dart Ridge and Valley Walk, Taw-Teign Link, Dartmoor Way and Erme Valley Trail; a coast to coast walk is possible using the last of these.

The Tarka Trail

180 miles in a figure-of-eight in the northern part of Devon based on Barnstaple; a stretch of the route makes use of the Tarka Line railway; the Trail follows the route taken by Tarka the Otter in the book of that name; generally comprehensively way marked. It passes through numerous towns, including Barnstaple, Bideford, Torrington, Hatherleigh, Okehampton, Lynmouth and Ilfracombe. A great variety of landscapes, including wooded river valleys, rugged moorland, coastal cliffs and sandy bays. Walking varies between easy and strenuous depending on the location. Coincides with the South West Coast Path for part of its route, the Two Moors Way for another part and the Dartmoor Way for a third; links with the West Devon Way, Two Castles Trail, Little Dart Ridge and Valley Walk and Dartmoor Way.

Little Dart Ridge and Valley Walk

An 11 mile link between the Tarka Trail and Two Moors Way in northern Devon, with a spur to the village of Chulmleigh; the route is not currently way marked. It passes through Witheridge at its eastern end where it meets the Two Moors Way, otherwise only the villages of Chulmleigh and Chawleigh. Mostly valley scenery (the Little Dart); quiet and secluded pastoral and woodland landscapes. Walking is mostly fairly easy with occasional short sharp climbs and descents in and out of the valley. links with the Tarka Trail at the Western End, and Two Moors Way at the Eastern. There is Train access via the Tarka Line from Exeter to Eggesford at the Western End, and buses to Witheridge at the Eastern End.

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Last Edited 09/02/2010    Copyright © 2000-2010 Witheridge

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