UP THE PLYM TO LEGIS TOR AND RINGMORE DOWN
START POINT: CADOVER BRIDGE CP GRID REF: 555646

This 4 mile walk was one of the popular Thursday evening summer walks offered by our group each summer.

If the weather is good and the location easy to get to then we can get 30 walkers out for the evening stroll followed by a drink in a local pub. All factors were in our favour on 14th August and approaching 30 walkers made it to the start point for the walk led by Dave Pawley which followed the line of the river Plym for a mile or more before climbing up to visit Legis Tor and then across Ringmore Down and then back to the car park once again.

The outline map of the route followed is given above and to best appreciate the route, the outline above should be related to a 1:25000 map of Dartmoor (OS leisure no 28 is the one recommended).

Prompt at 7 PM Dave Pawley briefed the group on the route he aimed to follow and then he led the group out of the car park and across the grassy area by the side of the river.

This approach to the bridge gives excellent views of the bridge and on such a nice evening the bridge and the river were both very attractive.

We climbed up the bank by the bridge, crossed over it and made our way up the road for 50 yards before we came to a track by the right hand side of the road.

 

 

We turned off onto this track and headed off east across relatively flat ground, the terrain is flat but the track is quite rough in places as it takes us across surface mine workings.

After a couple of hundred yards there is a large pool which after rain extends right across the track which leads to a detour to higher ground to the north of the normal route.

Even after 10 days of wall to wall sunshine the pool was still there although it had shrunk from its normal larger size.

 

 

After about a kilometre of walking east the river Plym and the track we were walking swings due north, we were now walking right beside a lovely section of the River Plym, which was tumbling down over rocks and looked most attractive. We could see some large river pools which seemed ideal spots to jump in and cool down, not on the itinerary for this evening walk I hasten to add.

We followed the track up moving slightly away from the river from time to time but soon returning to it again.

We crossed two or three small streams flowing into the main river.

We followed the side of the river for about 0.5 kms and then crossed over a stile right beside the stream and Legis Tor was ahead of us and the only real uphill section of any significance lay ahead.

We gathered together by more surface mine workings before the climb up through what looked like thick bracken. There was a 200 feet climb up to the Tor and the bracken appeared to have no discernable path through it.

As we approached the green dense four feet high bracken we could see there was a narrow path up through.

We made our way up and about 2/3 of the way along we came to a large clearing in the bracken before re-entering it again for the final section up to the fence around Ringmore Down.

Pascale, now living in London but originally from France, who had joined us for the evening walk can be seen making good progress up to the top.

Ahead of us we could see some horizontal slats which looked decidedly unsteady when we tested them. No problem though, about 150 metres further along there was a proper stile over the fence.

Once over the enclosing fence around the whole of Ringmore Down we made our way across to the Tor and about 15 of us made the easy ascent to the top of the Tor.

The views were brilliant and one of our group pointed out the names of all the Tors in the vicinity, she had only been walking with us for a couple of years and put many of the group to shame with her knowledge.

Although not immediately obvious Legis Mire sits to the north east of the Tor and the best route around it is to walk north from the Tor for just under a kilometre before swinging around the top of the mire and heading north west across near the stone row and then over the crest of the Down before descending down to the side of Brisworthy plantation.

En route we walked right by a small stone circle with the remains of a kistvaen in the centre, I'd not knowingly spotted that before.

When we reached the crest and started the descent down to the plantation and the stile and gate off Ringmore Down the sun was sitting very low in the sky to our west and it looked flame red ahead of us.

We were soon down to the gate and then we turned left and made our way along the side of the plantation and out onto a road which we could follow, if necessary all the way back to Cadover Bridge.

 

We made our way out to a road junction and then walked on grassy banks to the right hand side of the road and could see off to our right three largish ponds.

Two of them are now stocked with trout and the third used for model boat sailing.

On this walk, the fishermen were there but no model boats unfortunately.

Rather than stick to the road, by the ponds, once small clay pits incidentally, we went in through a gate and followed the ups and downs of a track beside one of the pools.

 

At the far end we walked down a steep bank and by the back of a house enclosed in its own wooded plantation and then out onto the road for the final few metres back along the road to cross Cadover Bridge and return to the the large car park.

It was 8.50 PM and getting decidedly gloomy, soon our evening walks will remain a fond memory until next summer....... When we had set out people had been setting up a barbecue at the car park and upon our return it was in full swing.

Although it looked a great idea, our plan was different, we got into our cars and over 20 of us headed off to the Moorland Hotel at Wotter for our well earned drink and a bowl of chips, before returning to Plymouth.

For once I had led an evening walk when it was fine, and warm!! The first one in 2003, the other two having been in heavy rain on the first and a freezing cold wind on the second, guess it had to happen once in a blue moon.