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This walk: 2015-4-16. Hut circle, Butter Brook, blowing house, Tor Rocks Quarry, 2nd quarry, Puffing Billy Track, Western Beacon, cairns, Black Pool, Longstone, Butterdon Hill.

Walk details below - Information about the route etc.



Google Satellite view of the area - including the GPS track of the walk (compare with the Ordnance Survey map plus track below)

Similar walk in this area: 2nd May 2012.



Hut circle with double walls, SX 6445 5929 ......


Closer view of the walls, not terribly illustrative .....


Image J Butler 1993. Reproduced by kind permission (ref. 29 Sept. 2012).


The settlement is described by Jeremy Butler (1994), Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, Vol. 4, 3: Butter Brook Ford (fig. 53.2), pages 18-19. This Bronze Age settlement has been disturbed by tinners and their early stream-works and in recent times by the building of the modern reservoir. The Harford Moor Gate - Broomhill and Addicombe track can still be seen crossing the Butter Brook at Addicombe Ford and stepping stones. Another shallow crossing place can be found approximately where the "20" occurs on the scale bar.    


Butter Brook.


Stepping stones in Butter Brook, near SX 64375 59220.


Looking upstream, Butter Brook .....


Looking downstream, Butter Brook.


Zoomed view to Tor Rocks Quarry ..... Tristis Rock should be visible from here to the north-west.


Looking at the blowing house, that later became a smithy for the quarries, at SX 64213 59210 ..... as a blowing house, recorded as Butterbrook Mill, it is believed to pre-date 1750 .....


Closer view ..... the right-most stone just outside the house is the mould stone .....

Eric Hemery (1983), High Dartmoor, Robert Hale, London, page 260, quotes R. Hansford Worth when he was editing the Andrews Papers when he said the blowing house "was used a s a smithy when the3 quarries were worked at Tor Rocks" and continues .....

"In 1940 I found some heaps of scoria, which I first identified as tin-slag, but had, on closer examination to recognise as a clinker from the smithy.  There are also two earthfast stones which my wife discovered, and these have been used either for testing the edge of quarry tools or in practise in the use of jumpers.  The remains of the building give the appearance of old work, and the question has been how far it far it is the original blowing house or how far it was altered when converted into a smithy"


Mould stone .....


Looking down on the mould stone .....


Near the mould stone, a drilling practice stone, either for testing the efficacy of serviced drills or for jumper practise - or the effects of rock-worm.


Tor Rocks Quarry again.


Nearby sign .....


Broomhill Leat take-off .....


Broomhill Leat.


Tor Rocks Quarry .....


Opposite the quarry, a strange enclosure .....


Aws previous photograph, with a sturdy wall surrounding a pile of stone, why?


The track away from the quarry .....


Another look at Tor Rocks Quarry .....


A second quarry, about 100 metres south of the 1st quarry.


Cloudscape: altocumulus - 2,000 to 18,000 feet, mid-level layers or cloudlets. 


There was a bit of a fracas between two Belted Galloways, with the white cow also having a word.


Hut circle at SX 65128 58277, one of two in the walls of a homestead on this site ..... described by Jeremy Butler (1993), Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities, Vol. 4, 53:1 Addicombe enclosures and cairns, pages 16-18.


Two Moors Way marker .....


The other side of the marker .....


The crossing of tracks at SX 6511 5824, with the Puffing Billy Track coming in from the right and running up to the top centre of the photograph (to Redlake) and a bridle path crossing in the foreground. The ponies are standing in the enclosure of the farmstead.


The first cairn seen on climbing Western Beacon from the west side .....


Montage of three photographs showing the higher quarry on the south face of Western Beacon ..... looking just south of east .....


Another view of tghe first cairn with a sceond, plus a parish boundary marker .....


Another look into the quarry ....


As previous photograph .....


The rock here is not granite; it is either ....

(1)  Middle Devonian Slates - Metalimestone. Metamorphic Bedrock formed approximately 385 to 398 million years ago in the Devonian Period. Originally sedimentary rocks formed in shallow carbonate seas. Later altered by low-grade metamorphism, or

(2)  Middle Devonian Slates - Slate, Hornfelsed. Metamorphic Bedrock formed approximately 385 to 398 million years ago in the Devonian Period. Originally sedimentary rocks. Later altered by high temperatures of igneous intrusion.

Unfortunately it is difficult to ascertain the exact location on the geological map made available by the British Geological Survey. through this app.


Looking back into the quarry.


The nearby parish boundary marker, with "U" signifying Ugborough ....


..... and "H" signifying Harford.


Another cairn.


Approaching Black Pool .....


Not very Black, and not much of a Pool ..... the moor is very dry at this time.


Longstone - 1 .....


Longstone - 2 .....


Longstone again, from a lower aspect.


Approaching Butterdon Hill with it's trig pillar .....


Another view.


Hangershell Rock, SX 6549 5935 ..... from the south ......


Hangershell Rock ..... from the west .....


Hangershell Rock, from a long way off, near the end of the walk.


Walk details

MAP: Red = GPS satellite track of the walk.

Crown copyright and database rights 2015.  Ordnance Survey
Licence number 100047373
Use of this data is subject to terms and conditions.
Also, Copyright 2005, Memory-Map Europe, with permission.



This walk was reached from Plymouth via the A38, exiting at Lee Mill. The road is good until you leave Cornwood, then it becomes a single track road, with passing places. From Cornwood, it is three miles of narrow lanes to Harford. There is a similar approach from the eastern end of Ivybridge. On entering Harford  you need to turn left (from the Cornwood direction) after the church and drive up the narrow lane and go through the gate onto the moor, parking just inside the gate, at the yellow cross /   P  symbol on the map.


Distance - 7.91 km / 4.92 miles.



All photographs on this web site are copyright 2007-2015 Keith Ryan.
All rights reserved - please email for permissions

Sister web sites
Dartmoor Tick Watch
The Cornish Pasty - The Compleat Pastypaedia