Tuesday, 20 October 2015


Back home from Wales, I cycled up the Puffing Billy trail to see what Autumn looks like here. It is a former tramway starting below Western Beacon, Dartmoor's most southerly torr. This is the view looking up from Filham near Ivybridge on NCN2.

The tramway is about 8 miles long and a mountain bike is needed for the stony trail.  It was built for a china clay works about 120 years ago at Redlake which is near the head of the River Avon.  I had chosen a bright sunny day with a cool light wind coming from the north.  The Beast has been left at home and I am riding for the first time a new mountain bike with 29" wheels. This is my first view of the trail

Setting the scene the views are enormous. Behind me the sea shimmers and I can see the coast from Cornwall down to Start Point and on to Torbay.  I do not cycle far and Bodmin Moor comes into view while a little further I can see almost to Exeter.  Ponies come into view as do Belted Galloway cattle, sheep and lots of birds. There is no traffic noise except from a distant aeroplane. I have passed Butterdon and find Hangershell Rock, a good vantage point

Three Barrows is where the tramway takes me next and this is the distant hill in this photo. However I must take a photo of my bike to send to Dagmar, my German friend.

I come across a herd of ponies

My journey's end is Leftlake. I could have gone further but decided that will be for another day

There is another ride near here that shows a completely different aspect to Dartmoor which I want to do shortly. It is to Piles Copse, one of Dartmoor's three ancient woodlands dating back 10.000 years. Judging by my enjoyment of this new bike, this ride could be soon

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