SADDLE BRIDGE TO EASTERN WHITTABARROW VIA THE O BROOK, DRY LAKE, RYDER’S HILL, WALLABROOK GIRT, HUNTINGDON CROSS, THE RIVER AVON CLAPPER BRIDGE TO EASTERN WHITTABARROW – 6.3 MILES.
Bob Bruce led the group, most of whom assembled at Shipley Bridge car park and went in two cars (thanks to Bob and to Derek in the DPA mobile) to Combestone Tor car park. Then the group of ten set off at 10.30 a.m., walking down to the Forest Boundary at Saddle Bridge. Threatening low cloud and drizzle lifted as we ascended the O Brook and up the impressive tin streamwork of Drylake. After a coffee break at the top of Drylake the walk passed Holne Parish boundstones and on to Ryder’s Hill, where we enjoyed a 360 degree view of Dartmoor as we took lunch on this the highest part of the boundary on the southern moor.
Onwards past a Buckfastleigh parish boundstone, down Wallabrook Girt, another very impressive streamwork, past Huntingdon Tin Mine, Huntingdon Rabbit Warren and Keble Martin’s Chapel, (which had been cleared of vegetation a few years ago by DPA volunteer Keith Ryan) to Huntingdon Cross beside the River Avon. Then we walked upstream to the clapper bridge to cross the Avon and enjoyed a tea break beside the river before climbing the slopes to Eastern Whittabarrow. Some of the party climbed to the very top of the striking cairn.
Then leaving the Forest Boundary we followed the Zeal Tor tramway down to Shipley Bridge, which we reached about 5 pm.
Total distance walked 8.8 miles, taking about 6 ½ hours. All dry, except for some wet feet!