After the thrill of Friday’s partial eclipse I decided to travel a little further for this week’s Dartmoor Microadventure and head out towards Hound Tor, from Plymouth there is a very scenic driving route through Dartmeet and Widecombe-in-the-Moor, a quaint little village that I had the good fortunate of going to school in for my last year at primary school. It is famous for it’s annual fayre. We decided to continue northeast to our destination Hound Tor, a heavily weathered granite outcrop that according to novelist and scholar Sabine Baring-Gould resembles the heads of dogs and indeed in local legend were thought to be a pack of hounds turned to stone along with their master Bowerman (who can be seen in the form of Bowerman’s Nose outcrop nearby) as punishment for disrupting a coven of witches. It is also though to have inspired Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles.
From Hound Tor it is possible to walk via the deserted medieval village of Hundatora and onto Haytor, arguably one of Dartmoor’s most famous landmarks. interesting to me as I began to climb Hayor Rock I noticed large feldspar crystals within the granite, such feldspars are presence within the historically heavily quarried Haytor rock, of which can be seen as parts of Tower Bridge in London, yet I was fascinated by the size of them within the outcrop itself averaging to the naked eye as 3-4inch white rectangular crystals.
At 457 metres AMSL the view was incredible with eroded paths creating an almost barren martian landscape below our blue skies, gorse fires could be seen in the distance and once again I was glad that I can spend my weekends on Dartmoor.