Blackaton Cross – Penn Beacon – Shell Top – The Big Pond

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Blackaton Cross – Penn Beacon – Shell Top – Leaning Stone – The Big Pond

This walk is all about the views it offers from the high points and really to enjoy what it has to offer, it should only be undertaken on a fine and clear day. It there is low cloud, rain or worst of all fog, go for a lower-level walk and save this walk for good conditions only.

From Plymouth looking out towards Dartmoor to the north, the views are dominated by two high points sitting high up and overlooking the clay-pits of Lee Moor. The first viewing point is Penn Beacon, which offers magnificent views out across Plymouth, right around South Devon and many, many miles out into the English Channel. The second, Shell Top, offers an even more panoramic view of a large part of Dartmoor and right across to Bodmin Moor and South-East Cornwall, as well as the Devon coast and Plymouth. Absolutely amazing vistas unfold before you. If you've never seen clay-pits from above, located as these vantage points are, right above the Lee Moor Clay-pits, their sheer size and depth will astound you, right on the very edge of Dartmoor National Park too!!

There is a variety of ways of getting up to these vantage points. The route provided in this walk offers the shortest and easiest way up any of them. Having said that you still have about a 800ft climb, so be prepared for some exercise.

En route you walk from Blackaton Cross car park, very close to the clay-pits, then up right through one of the largest Bronze Age enclosures on Dartmoor and within it you can't help but imagine what living there 2,500 years ago must have been like.

You will also walk beside one of the few remaining working leats on Dartmoor. The Clay Pit Leat transports water from the River Plym above Ditsworthy Warren House for more than 5km down to supply 'The Big Pond', which acts as a huge header tank for the water supply used in clay excavation.

England - South West England - Devon - Dartmoor


Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Great Views, Hills or Fells, Industrial Archaeology, Moor

Walkingworld members near this walk

Distance away
8.7 Miles
23.6 Miles