This was the holiday I booked when ‘hf booking’ said that none of the ones I wanted were available! They didn’t tell me then, or in any of the information that was sent, that that the hotel – Moorlands – had been sold and hf would be using it but with different management and ideas about food.
I arrived on the Monday and we did get the cream tea promised, although rather later than planned. This enabled us to meet the leaders and the other people who arrived on Monday. I didn’t do the walk up to Haytor, though, as I have done it several times before. The meal in the evening was OK, but there weren’t enough vegetables and it was a bit “fancy”. That was true of all the evening meals during the week.
The next day we had to be ready for the coach at 9.15 which took those of us on the easier walk to the village of Easton from where we walked through….
……. set up in Tudor times. We then passed…..
……and through woods and down into the Teign Gorge. We crossed the river….
……. where we played “Pooh sticks” – before continuing beside the river in woodland. The day being sunny and hot this was a lovely walk with……
……and sound of the river.
…….and stopped at the pub there for long, cool drinks – well, that is what I had anyway. From there we climbed up an initially steep path……
……and stopped at…..
…..to have a look at…..
…..and then continued on to…..
This was built in the 1930s, I think, but I can’t say I was impressed as it is under repair and had scaffolding round it. We had lunch there and more drinks – but I didn’t pay to go in. This seems to have been a sensible move as those with National Trust cards said there wasn’t much to see as so much of it was under repair.
After lunch our route took us back down to the Teign Gorge, along this and then…..
……and eventually to…..
……..which had some interesting buildings, including…..
We had drinks in a pub there before the coach picked us up and took us back to Moorlands.
In the evening we did some origami – starting with making a jumping frog from a train ticket. The idea then was to try to get it to jump into a glass or cup!
We were then given a sheet of newspaper and were shown how to make it first into a GI cap, the adapt it into a printer’s hat, change this into a mortar board and finally into a bishop’s mitre.
While I could probably make another frog, I doubt if I could do the hats.
The following day the easier walk was dropped at Wembury, where we had a quick look at the church before going onto the coastal path. Near the star we passed this field….
…..which didn’t seem to have any agricultural purpose. Maybe it was conserving something? The path continued by the coast (!) and after passing…..
…there was very little view, except of the hedges with a few gaps where we could see…..
…and eventually a view…..
……not the nicest of views. We did see one or two warships going into or out of Plymouth and passed a few places with coastal “cottages” and cafes and such like, but it wasn’t a terribly interesting walk.
When we reached Plymouth sound we just missed the ferry across, so had a drink in the hotel there and caught…..
We then had time to admire the steps where the Pilgrim Fathers sailed from, have an ice-cream and other such things until the coach collected us.
In the evening it was the hf quiz. The team I was in came 2nd out of 3, so respectable!
On the following day the coach dropped the easier group near Dartmeet, although we didn’t actually go and look at it. We followed the East Dart river passed…..
…….which was lovely. There were…..
….near part of it. After a while we followed a smaller stream which had a…..
……and headed up onto the moor. The last part was through bracken and was a bit of….
……up to Yar Tor, where we had….
We continued on passed a…..
…..(not quite up to Stonehenge!) and this…..
We continued across the moor, doing some road walking, and came to….
…..which was the remains of a deserted medieval settlement. The…..
…was clearly seen and there was a board and map to help us to interpret it. Some people suggested that after it was excavated the stones had been moved to….
…..clearer. I suppose they might have been.
From here we continued across the moor and eventually down to….
There was time for a drink at the pub – where they had ducks and hens (some all yellow and fluffy with fluffy legs) wandering round the garden, where we were sitting.
The coach picked us up and it was only a short drive back to the hotel, for dinner and to pack ready to leave the next day.
So was it a good holiday? Yes; the weather was good and on the very hot day we were mostly in shade and stopped at 2 pubs and a cafe. The walks were pleasant and parts of two of them, beside the rivers, were lovely. The hotel lunches were not up to standard, but were just about OK, so we didn’t starve! The company was also good, but I suspect that was partly because there were not too many people, so everyone mixed in.