Ivybridge P&R - around Western Beacon - Sharp Tor

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As people drive along the A38 express route from Plymouth towards Exeter, they begin to see the southern moorland fringe of Dartmoor. They pass by Ivybridge, with Western Beacon looming high above them and a little further on Ugborough Beacon stands proud, high above South Brent. Parallel to the A38 and a little above Ivybridge runs the Exeter to Plymouth main railway line. This walk offers you the opportunity of getting off the train or leaving your car at Ivybridge Station and going up to see just what the southern moors have to offer.

The walk starts from the greatly underused park-and-ride car park right beside Ivybridge Station and leads you via a classic moorland drift lane up to join a track, known as the Redlake Tramway, which was used to transport china clay from ten miles up on the moor down to the main railway line you might even have come in on. You see where the track ended and where an inclined plane railway was used for the final steep section to the line. The walk then leads you higher and higher, passing right under Western Beacon and around and right up to the top of Ugborough Beacon, overlooking and high above South Brent. Once you have gained the height you make your way right into the moor as you head across, passing Spurrel's Cross and Hobajon's Cross, to arrive at another high point. Sharp Tor overlooks a magnificent moorland valley through which flows the River Erme, running right down through Ivybridge and then Ermington, before reaching the sea by the Flete Estate and Holbeton.

From Sharp Tor, after a steep descent the going becomes relatively easy as you walk across grassy downland, passing by Harford Moor Gate, over a couple of brooks and on around under Western Beacon again, to return via David’s Lane and so back to the car park. The next time you drive by in the car you can look up above Ivybridge and reflect on the day you enjoyed the moors in the area.

England - South West England - Devon - Dartmoor

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