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This walk: 2009-1-4. Grimstone and Sortridge Leat, clapper bridge, Vixen Tor, Merrivale Quarry, sett makers' bankers, pixies' matchsticks, Middle Staple Tor, Little Staple Tor and sign in the Rees Jeffreys car park.

Walk details below - Information about the route etc.


Clapper bridge over the Grimstone and Sortridge Leat. This supplies various farms downstream. Feather and tare marks are clearly visible on the bridge.


Vixen Tor - out of bounds to the public.


Another view.


Boundary stone just outside the boundary wall around the tor .....


..... WB = Whitchurch parish boundary and .....

..... SB = Sampford Spiney parish boundary.


Another view of the tor showing the proximity of an ancient burial cist .....


Different views of the cist .....

..... as previous photo.


Almost back at the road, looking towards the Dartmoor Inn pub, just beyond the white house, Jim ..... closed again!


The old explosives store for Merrivale Quarry - not so pretty in close-up, so not shown here.


A montage view of the quarry - click on the photo to see a large version. Don't forget to use the F11 key to see the full depth of screen and the Left-Right arrow keys to move left and right. You'll need the F11 key again to get back to your t "Back" icon.


A zoomed view of waterfalls into the quarry.


Buildings in the quarry.


The first sett makers' bankers, at SX 54525 75483 5 metres, with Great Staple (Steeple) Tor in the background.


Three sett makers' bankers. Setts were made as cobble stones, the makers were paid one penny per sett.


A lone sett maker's banker.


Two more .....


Beside the dry leat - a diversion of the Grimstone and Sortridge Leat by Mr Duke, owner of Merrivale Quarry; there was much opposition by commoners so its unlikely the channel was ever used. Note bankers on the left.


General view of sett makers' bankers on the flank of Great Staple (Steeple) Tor.


Another .....


Three more .....


Still more .....


Yet another .....


A depression in the ground where (probably) carts were stopped for loading, now filled with water.


A double set of bankers .....


..... the same  again from a different angle.


Three of them!


The red structures are Pixie's Matchsticks ..... "the red structures are the fruiting bodies of a lichen, which is an association of an alga and a fungus. The lichen is the lighter coloured structure in the photo, the bright green being a common moss whose name I forget. I believe the lichen is British Soldier Lichen or Cladonia cristatella" - Liz, way back. See also this page on the Legendary Dartmoor web site.


Another angle .....


More .....


More again .....


Still more.


The last sett makers' banker, at SX 54185 75634 seen on this walk.


A view to Great Staple (Steeple) Tor with mist around the top.


Middle Staple (Steeple) Tor.


..... from another viewpoint .....


Vaguely artistic ..... and .....


..... more so?


Looking south with a dark sky from a low heavy cloud base. Good view of the Grimstone and Sortridge leat contouring round Barn Hill on the right.


Sign in the Rees Jeffreys car park (also Rees Jeffreys Road Fund, and more Rees Jeffreys information via the British Library).


Walk details

MAP: Red = GPS satellite track of the walk.

Ordnance Survey © Crown copyright 2005. All rights reserved. Licence number 100047373.
Also, Copyright © 2005, Memory-Map Europe, with permission.


This walk was easily reached via the road from Princetown to Tavistock road or the Tavistock-Moretonhampstead road (B3357). Parking was at the  P  symbol on the map with the yellow cross, just west of Merrivale.


Distance - 3.77 km / 2.34 miles



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Dartmoor Tick Watch
The Cornish Pasty - The Compleat Pastypaedia