01 July, 2017

Getting Around. Part Three; Walkies!

Last part of the roundup, not quite a week after contained events.. woo?

Twas time to stretch the legses, also revisit untrod places and see some pretty things..

Oh yes, what hasn't been up here yet? T'Moor! [proper t'Moor, that is, not merely swanning around the undergrowth chasing flutterbies...]

My intended mighty yomp was curtailed by unexpected locks [bloody sww...] where locks had not been and should not be but I didn't let that stop me entirely. Oh no. The yomp will now come at a later date and be even Mightier, but it will happen.

Instead, I took some pretty scenic pictures, then found myself actually birding.

Be warned, there is much granite coming up, some of it even upright....

But not all;

Isn't that the cutest little clapper bridge?

I had business with some stones I'd not seen up close for.. oh, maybe ten years!! There's a fair few of them, definitely one of the most impressive rows around, never mind just on t'Moor.

Yup, I went up Stalldown;

Arkham escapee reaches Devon

Just a part of the Stalldown Row. Though not fully upright, or even straight - due to an interesting mix of soil creep and well-meaning antiquarian - but especially when approached from the south, it is quite something. Devon hills are[in]famous for the way they just keep going, one false crest after another, and this row keeps up handsomely. Getting to the south end nowadays is a palaver - though so's the north end! - but the effort is rewarded.

Time for more detail, and your close-ups, sweetie.
At the southern end - the true end, not the bit you can see above - there is an interesting pattern of fallen stones;

Looking north along the row's line

Perhaps 15 or 16 stones originally? It certainly looks like a fallen circle, of a similar diameter to other row-enders, such a Hingston Hill [though minus a cairn, so an actual circle]. You'd need to dig it to know.

A walker heading north will, after following the line more than the stones across a nice area of drainage, meet more upright and less equivocal megaliths..

More like it

Scenery to the south

A small circle adjacent to the row?
[Something similar at the Birch Tor rows]

Cresting the hill, the tallest stones.

From the north slope, ring cairn on the right

Cairn, showing the two rings of stones

I then headed along the ridge line to the big easterly cairn; Hilson's House [spellings vary]. There is a very petite building within the large cairn, which is handy when it's blowing a hoolie and you want some lunch. :) Getting inside would be an issue, as unlike at White Barrow, there's not a doorway [this guy was a pole-vaulter, maybe? ;) ], but the walls give shelter, and you get to see more from outside them.

Three Barrows and [Sharp] Tor from Hilson's House

After I'd sat about for a bit, I headed back and relocated to a more hospitable entry point over the valley. From there I actually got in a wee yomp as I headed up to that one on the right in the pic up there. Yet another Sharp Tor. I feel this lack of originality in naming tors simply will not do, you know. So, I have over the years been amending my map with better titles, and I think I have one for this one. It is clearly in no way sharp - well, except the wind; the Edge there is amaaaaaazing in a westerly and this occasion was no exception - so I shall rename it Swift Tor.

View from Swift Tor

Why? Well, a close replacement always helps the memory, and there were indeed no few of them about. The ridge to the immediate south of the tor was clearly working no not only funnel wind, but lots of unfortunate spiders up to the birds. They were so busy having fun, they sometimes forgot to dodge my camera;

Keeping a safe distance..

Look at that crop

The irony of speedy Swifts being ok for my camera, but lumbering Bitterns and unmoving butterflies not, is not at all lost on me..

Anyways, I spent a fair while watching the Swifts doing their thing. That I was sat almost out of the wind was in no way a factor in this, btw. There was very little else using the air - I wasn't just watching the Swifts, great though they were - other that the usual corvids, Woodpigs and a hoverBuzzard.

Not a Kestrel

It has occurred that I haven't mentioned much in the way of wildlife, other than Swifts.
The usual spp. were about, with birds being unspectacular in their lack of surprise - well, apart from the Spot Flies, [which were :D rather than WOO!]. The wind didn't help insects, with the only butterflies being Small Heaths - in numbers, fast and often backwards.. - while odonata did better, with White-legged Damselfly and Southern Hawker at the sheltered Moor edge, and a lone Keeled Skimmer in a wet bit higher up.

I almost missed the herd of deer, which saw me first as usual;

From out of shot; "I said keep up, kid!!"

One and a leg.  Not great from 11+...

It was a day of salvaging what was possible and in that accord, I think it went well.

Be Seeing You..

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