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  • Wizard Steve

On the road again - 2 - Dartmoor, part 1 - Burrator

Updated: Mar 1

From the Cornish border I followed the main road to the town of Tavistock, then south to Yelverton, where I then took the B road to Dousland. At the crossroads in the village I turned right. I followed the lane to the outskirts where another lane appears to the left signposted for Burrator Reservoir.


Upon reaching the reservoir, I continued ahead. There are a number of good spots to park around the reservoir, but I have my favourite spot, about halfway round. The best thing about it is that there is absolutely zero satellite signal! No internet. No telephone. I discovered this particular spot years ago when I had my first caravan and whenever I’m in the area, return, if only for a flying visit. At this point, I aught to mention that the reservoir is owned by the local waterworks company and they apparently claim the land around it. After saying that, I have only ever been approached once with regards to ‘camping’, and that was on an occasion when a mate, Irish John (www.johngallaghermusic.com), as I remember, had pitched his tent nearby.



There is a small bridge over the River Meavy. The river flows into the reservoir. The river continues beyond the dam at the southern end of the reservoir. There are also a number of tracks and bridleways leading up onto the higher ground of the moors.

Road over dam

Pumping station



Beyond the parking area is amazing. It is ancient. There are a number of boulders, the remains of what was once a tin mine, now overgrown.





The trees that have since grown up there are incredibly old and covered with several inches of moss.





There is also a waterway called Newleycombe Lake that flows down to meet the Meavy just beyond the bridge. In old Dartmoor tongue, the term ‘lake’ means ‘tarn’, a pool from which a stream emerges.





We stayed here for three days. The cats played in the area happily and wandered around with me as we explored up and along the bank of the Newleycombe, etc. The local ponies were around as always, too. They take very little notice of humans.



When ready, we headed out. I drove back past the reservoir. I don’t tend to continue around as the road becomes narrower in places. I explored the route years back. I wouldn’t recommend it for larger vehicles, especially for those less experienced.



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