Sunday, 13 November 2011

Exmoor, North Devon

THIS weekend we spent a couple of days staying at the Stag Hunter's Inn near Exmoor. I think that the word for the weather was "feisty".  There are some amazing deeply cut valleys, supporting beech and oak woodland, to the north of Exmoor; as both these tree species hang onto their leaves, even now, the colours were breathtaking - at least when the sun was out!

Mist hangs in the valleys as the sheep go to their breakfast
On Saturday we did a circular walk of about eight miles onto the soggy moors.  This was a real test of our boots - well done left boot - bad right boot!  The locals seemed pretty relaxed about the wetness...


This old laid hedge, long since left unmanaged ran along the edge of the open moor.


We did manage to lose our exact location at one point, but soon found our way into a beautiful valley as planned.




The air is very clean and the lichens on this hawthorn were the proof.

 

Towards the end of the walk we passed through this quite magical woodland, with tall oaks and moss covered boulders.

 

Once back to the start, the sun shone upon us...

 

During the day we came across the local "hunt".  Whilst I am not in favour of hunting, I enjoyed seeing the hounds and riders, especially the chaps in their bowler hats.  One or two hounds became distracted and missed the pack ride off..here is one particular tardy...


I have have decided not to publish the images of the riders and other hounds, as I did not ask their permission to take their photos.
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On Sunday the weather was much more overcast and dramatic...

Darkening skies over Exmoor
Now homeward bound via Dunster, we drove through a stunning National Nature Reserve woodland.

 

 Finally one last view of the moody moors...couldn't resist it:


A really fab weekend in a stunning place.



3 comments:

  1. Used to lead walks there some years ago. It still looks just as beautiful as I remember it, and the weather looks much the same too! Thanks for the memories....

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