The Cherrybrook is situated almost at the centre of the High Moor and you can walk straight out of the front door onto the moor. Apart from the adjacent small fields, all the land surrounding The Cherrybrook is common land which means that it is open access land for all walkers.
We are currently putting together a series of walks of various lengths that you can accomplish by walking directly from The Cherrybrook without the need for driving. These walks will take you to the local tors, woodlands and streams and will take from between 2 and 8 hours. None of the walks are difficult, although should you decide to climb any of the tors along these routes, then you must be prepared for scrambles of various difficulty.
Free maps are available for all of the walks listed here, together with easy to follow directions.
Although none of these walks can be described as difficult, the Dartmoor weather must be treated with respect. The weather can change from one extreme to the other very quickly and it is also quite common for mists to descend suddenly. All walkers should be prepared for these sudden changes of conditions and come equipped with warm waterproof clothing and footwear. A compass is also essential if the weather is such that a mist might descend.
Click on the name of the walks below for further details of each walk.
Although I describe these as dog friendly walks, they are equally suited to those walking without a dog. They are relatively short, all start and finish at The Cherrybrook and have no stiles. Full written directions and maps are available for all of these walks.
The Cherrybrook Leat
A short, fairly level walk of 1 mile starting from our rear gate and having no other gates. Very easy to follow and should take no longer than 30 minutes.
North East Muddilake
A short, fairly level walk of 1.5 miles starting from our east meadow gate and having 2 other gates. Very easy to follow and should take no longer than 45 minutes.
A easy walk of just over 2 miles starting from our rear gate and having 2 other gates and a couple of small hills. Easy to follow and should take approximately 1 hour.
Longaford Tor & Wistman's Wood
A longer walk of about 3 miles with a steady but not steep climb to Longaford Tor. Starting from our rear gate and having no other gates, this walk should take about 90 mins. This walk can be extended to 4 miles (2 hours) by adding on the loop to Crockern Tor, described above. However, this will also add a stile with a dog gate at the junction of the 2 walks.
Crockern Tor & Muddilake
A more challenging walk starting from our east meadow gate and having 4 (possibly 6) other gates, with paths that are not always easy to follow. It is also necessary to cross the Muddilake Brook which, although relatively easy at all times of the year, requires some care and Wellington boots could be useful. The walk finishes with a short climb to the top of Crockern Tor before returning to the Cherrybrook. This walk is just over 3 miles in length and should take about 90 mins.
Beardown Man is a pillar of granite standing over 11' (3.5m) above ground. It was erected over 4,000 years ago, but it's purpose can only be a matter for speculation. The name man comes not from the shape of the pillar, but from the Celtic word maen meaning stone.
There are only 12 standing stones or menhirs left on the open moors in Dartmoor and Beardown Man is one of the remotest of all. It is also the highest on Dartmoor at 1,778' (542m) and the second tallest.
This walk takes you from The Cherrybrook, past Littaford and Longaford Tors, across the West Dart River at the weir and skirts Beardown Tor before arriving at Lydford Tor. From here Beardown Man is still one mile (1.6km) away across the most remote part of the route. Although you will be right on the top of the high moor, this a very flat plateau and the moor is likely to be very wet.
After visiting Beardown Man, this walk returns to Lydford Tor, before making a tour of the three Beardown Tors and then descends to Two Bridges to cross back over the West Dart River.
Before returning to The Cherrybrook, you climb up Crockern Tor, which not only is the legendary home of the ancient pagan God of Dartmoor, Old crockern, but was also the venue for Devon's Stannary Parliament. The Stannary Parliaments (there was another for Cornwall) were the tin miners' own parliaments with their own set of laws which generally overruled the English Laws. These parliaments date back to the 12th century and Devon's Parliament last met in 1748.
This is a longish walk of 8.7 miles (14km) and 5 hours should be allowed to complete it. Beardown Man is situated in a remote part of Dartmoor and the surrounding moor will be wet at all times of the year. In bad weather conditions, map and compass are essential for this walk.
This walk can be shortened by returning from Beardown Man the way you came, omitting the Beardown Tors, Two Bridges and Crockern Tor. This will shorten the walk to 7.4 miles (11.9km), taking about 4 hours 15 minutes.
Bellever Tor is one of the closest tors to The Cherrybrook being just 1.5 miles away. Although obscured from the front bedrooms by our trees, it is easily visible from the meadows in front of the house. Bellever Tor stands at 1,453' (443m) and offers extensive views over South Dartmoor.
This walk starts down the bridleway opposite The Cherrybrook and after traversing Muddilake moor crosses Muddilake Brook by a ford. Care is needed here as this can be fairly deep and a small detour may be needed to avoid wet feet.
The route takes you down to the Cherry Brook, (the river from which we take our name), and which is crossed by a road bridge, before heading directly towards Bellever Tor. All of the footpaths here are permissive paths not marked on the OS maps.
The top of Bellever Tor is split into two, separated by a small gulley. The two summits are almost identical in height but the one without the trig point is the easiest to scramble up. Both offer beautiful views across the moors and of Bellever Forest.
The walk then descends through Bellever Forest before arriving at the Powder Mills. The Powder Mills is the site of a former gunpowder factory that was built in 1844 on land originally belonging to Cherrybrook Farm. During the 18th century gunpowder was used for mining and quarrying in the area. However, with the invention of dynamite in 1867 and the decline of tin and copper mining, the powder mills closed in 1897.
Although the trees surrounding The Cherrybrook are clearly visible from the Powder Mills, a direct route back is not recommended as much of the intervening land is boggy and difficult to cross. Instead the footpath towards Longaford Tor must be followed until reaching higher land, when a direct route back to The Cherrybrook is possible.
This is a relatively easy walk of 6.5 miles (10.5km) and should take approximately 3 hours 30 minutes.
Wistman's Wood is Devon's oldest wood, dating back to prehistoric times, and consists of ancient dwarf oak trees, twisted and moss-covered, giving them an eerie and mystical look. Described by many as "the most haunted place on Dartmoor" Wistman's Wood has attracted many legends, with tales of Druids, ghosts, hell hounds and many others.
Situated on the banks of the West Dart, Wistman's Wood is just a mile from The Cherrybrook and well worth the visit.
The walk recommended from The Cherrybrook, not only takes in Wistman's Wood, but also Littaford Tor and Longaford Tor. Littaford Tor is our nearest Tor and stands at 1,443' (440m) and Longaford Tor standing at 1,663' (507m) offers beautiful views across the High Moor in all directions.
This walk is 3.25 miles (5.25km) and without climbing the two tors can only be described as easy. Climbing the tors involves a relatively easy scramble, but the walk can be completed without climbing either tor. Excluding stops, this walk should take approximately 2 hours.