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  • Writer's pictureJodie Newton

Two short walks, Crazywell Pool from Burrator and Venford Falls

Norsworthy Bridge

The family and I have been out on two shorter walks in the past few days. The first to Crazywell pool, which was our first as a family on Dartmoor since Richards fall and subsequent broken leg just 3 months ago (the full story of those events are in a previous post).

The second was a solo parenting mission to find Venford reservoir's hidden waterfall.

Raddick Lane

Last Sunday morning we rose early, checked the weather forecast and headed to Burrator reservoir.

Richards leg is healing quite well and every day sees better movement and less swelling. He is a determined individual and has missed Dartmoor more than he anticipated.

The walk was his idea and he was adamant he would be capable of the 2.8 mile hike to the pool and back with the aid of two hiking poles replacing his crutches.

We parked at Norsworthy Bridge, Burrator and took the path up through the trees heading North East along the right hand side of the woods. Following the path we continued away from the wooded area with Down Tor on the opposite side of the valley to our right until we hit the brook running down from the gully beneath Crazy Well Pool. We walked up beside the small stream of water to the pool above.

Climbing up the Gully to Crazywell Pool

He made it to Crazywell.

It was a warm day and a couple of other families and hikers were there already. The pool is large enough to accommodate a fair few visitors comfortably and everyone had plenty of space to swim and enjoy the surrounding views.

There is more information about the pool itself in my previous blog post when we walked in to it last summer, from the opposite direction along the Devonport Leat.

The water was fairly warm and even Neville had a little paddle.

After an hour or so as often happens on Dartmoor, it began to rain lightly and so we decided that we would get dressed and head back to the car. Richard had already achieved a greater distance than he had previously in the time since his operation and we knew he was uncomfortable despite his stating that he was fine. We chose to walk back on the path headed West from the pool to Raddick Lane and drop to

the path we'd walked up at the small cross road. It was a super little walk and Richard was beaming with well deserved pride all day.

Walk 2, Venford

Venford Falls

It's the Summer holidays and in order to prevent my children from sitting in their pyjamas and rotting their brain on YouTube, I planned a walk around Venford Reservoir.

I had seen photos of the hidden waterfalls on the Dartmoor 365 Facebook group and decided to head up there for a potter down to the Dart and back along Venford Brook.

Luckey Tor in the distance

The path on the ridge

From the most Westerly carpark (SX685 714) over the bridge by the water works, is a fairly flat path along the ridge headed North. We walked along until the path seemed to bend Westward. There was a well established joining path down to the Dart with Luckey Tor opposite. This was not on my OS map but headed in the direction of the river and so we pottered down into the valley through the trees.

Venford Brook

It was quiet and very pretty. Once we hit the Dart at Blackpool we turned East and found another small track the lead back to Venford Brook. There were tracks either side of the brook and we found that crossing the water where we could a couple of times gave us an easier route.

The brook is beautiful, cascading water and moss covered rocks made the little valley feel very relaxing and the four of us were singing and quoting from our favourite movies as we and the dog meandered along through the trees.

Eventually we found the falls and decided to stop for a refreshing plunge beneath the cascading water. What we didn't realise was that there is a lovely little plunge pool just above the falls them self and had we not just put our clothes back on, this too would've made an ideal place to stop and play in the water.

Knowing that the brook lead back to the water works we decided to continue along, heading up stream on the right hand bank only to discover that the track leads almost directly back to the carpark. This was worth noting for future visits, on warmer days when the children just want a quiet "swim". Our route was about 2 miles so fairly easy, though some parts of the path were a bit of a scramble.

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