Whiteworks - Foxtor Mire - Childe's Tomb - Whiteworks

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Whiteworks - Foxtor Mire - Goldsmith's Cross - Childe's Tomb - Devonport Leat - Kistvaen - Whiteworks

Do not attempt this walk after heavy rain or in foggy conditions and be prepared to turn back if the first brook you have to cross is running too high.

Foxtor Mire and Childe's Tomb are places on Dartmoor that have stimulated legends and stories. Horses and riders are supposed to have ridden into Foxtor Mire never to be seen again, sucked down deep into the bogs.

Why is Childe's Cross and Tomb in such a remote spot? It is said that Childe got caught out in a heavy snowstorm and in an attempt to survive, he killed and disembowelled his horse and tried to shelter inside it. All to no avail, he froze to death. There is more to the story than that. For the full story: www.flaxey-green.co.uk/dartmoor.htm (click Cross 8).

It is also said that Conan Doyle once visited Foxtor Mire and then wrote the Hound of the Baskervilles; the fictitious Great Grimpound Mire was based on Foxtor Mire. The mire is crossable, though; providing the correct route is followed it isn't difficult, deviate from that route and you could end up like the horsemen, literally in the mire!

The walk is graded as easy. Well, apart from the mire the terrain is easy. There are no major hills to climb, although there are three short uphill sections. Finding Childe's Cross and Tomb is again an interesting challenge, not difficult but easy to miss if it is foggy.

This walk is one where you should be prepared to give up if there is too much water around, or indeed if it is foggy. The key test is the first brook, Nun's Cross Brook. If there is too much water in the brook it will be dangerous to cross it and the path beyond will be correspondingly wetter and softer, so don't be over-amibitious. If it is a foggy day, find a walk with more clearly defined waymarks. It would be foolhardy to venture into a known bog when you can't see where you are walking. Having said that, I got a great sense of achievement the first time I found the route across the mire, so the challenge is there, but use your common sense. Choose the right day to try it.

Post-walk at Princetown, which you must pass through to get to the start of the walk, there are toilets, museums, pubs, shops and the High Moorland National Park Visitors' Centre; plenty for you to do, see and enjoy before you leave this high moorland village and of course the very old Dartmoor Prison which still dominates it.

England - South West England - Devon - Dartmoor


Museum, Pub, Toilets

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Distance away
6.2 Miles
18.7 Miles