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  • Jodie Newton

Exploring Trendlebere Down

Trendlebere Down, Hound Tor woods and the East Dartmoor Nature Reserve.



Parking at SX 782 793


Bovey Valley Woods is made up of three Woodland Trust sites: Hisley Wood, Houndtor Wood and Pullabrook Wood.

They lie in the valley of the River Bovey, on the South-East side of Dartmoor and are part of the East Dartmoor National Nature Reserve.


The woods are close to the villages of Lustleigh and Manaton


Managed by Natural England and the Woodland trust, the Reserve lies fairly close to Haytor Rocks, open moorland and the lower wooded valleys of the River Bovey and Becca Brook.

Internationally important for its extensive, ancient upland Oakwood and heathland, it is legally protected as a Special Area of Conservation and Site of Special Scientific Interest.


We parked up on a chilly but bright November morning and the car park was already quite full.

The paths down into the nature reserve were easy to follow and lead to an information board.



Both Becka Brook and the River Bovey have some pretty little spots along the way where swimming and paddling would be lovely in warmer weather.

Exploring more of the footpaths and tracks through the ancient woodland is now firmly on my list of places that are free and fun, for school holidays and dog walks alike.



There were bat boxes to spot in the trees, who’s leaves had turned to burned autumn hues and the sunlight shone dappled through their patchy branches creating a magical feel to the area.

In the spring and summer months, I'm reliably informed that this is a great place for spotting butterflies and an abundance of flora and fauna, including beautiful carpets of bluebells.



We walked beside the river Bovey until we reached a pretty carthorse bridge, picturesque and medieval in structure that looked like it belonged on a biscuit tin.

We crossed the bridge and had intended to follow the path clockwise on the opposite side of the valley to which we had journeyed out. However our middle daughter was feeling unwell and so we cut our trip short on this occasion and pottered back to the car the way we had come.




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