Today we drove up onto the moor as it was a lovely bright sunny day..we headed to Chagford where there is a lovely walk beside the river. After parking we walked through the churchyard to see what flowers were out, and were rewarded with a lovely show of purple crocus scattered across the bank.
It was peaceful in the churchyard as it was early, just the sound of birds singing in the trees, and the sun casting shadows of the skeletal trees onto the church tower.
The lovely ancient thatched long house beside the church was still in shadow, one of the tiny leaden windows was thrown open to the soft morning air, and in the lee of the garden wall a string of snowdrops like a flowery necklace.
We followed the windy path through the graveyard where tufts of heather in purple, pink and white were flowering and little bunches of snowdrops lit the grey head stones, down to the beautiful old granite cross built into the war memorial..it was originally near the market place, and has an incised cross on the head.
Having admired the lovely old cross and the beautiful views across the moor from there we headed through the town which was waking up and down a very steep hill out of town, between huge granite walls where navelwort grew between the cracks and huge tree roots split the stone till we came out into the sunshine again and crossed a lovely old pack horse bridge where the River Teign flowed.
The bridle path followed the river and ran across a meadow which is part of the Two Moors way. On our left the ground rose into lovely undulating hills where magpies flew about the trees and we saw a couple of rabbits chasing each other.
There were some beautiful beech trees strung along the path, they were magnificent in their skeletal forms and this one had a lovely twisted trunk.
Eventually the path ran right beside the river, where it flowed peat coloured between the tree lined banks..
Amongst the grass and dun coloured stalks a patch of purple crocus shone like a jewel in a crown, sunlit and beautiful.
It was lovely and peaceful walking beside the river, birds flitted amongst the trees...sparrows, robins and chaffinch with their rosy chests. The sun shone warmly on the trees highlighting their naked boughs, it shone on the holly and sparkled on the gurgling river in flecks of gold.
And the shoulders of the hills on the other side were lined with oak and ash and beech, hedges divided the fields square and stubby in shades of blackcurrant and beige.
The river wound its way across the sunlit fields, Alders clung to the banks their heads covered in purple catkins, and their feet dipping into the icy water, where the huge river stones were bathed in golden ripples from the sun.
We came across a little weir that foamed and splashed and cascaded over the boulders, singing another song to the one we`d heard.
The path was strewn with beech mast that crunched beneath our feet, and the husks of hazel nuts that mice and squirrels had gnawed. Some of the trees wore ivy cloaks that reflected pretty shadows on their trunks.
On the hill we saw a lovely set of barns hunched and rusty roofed...no doubt owl haunted at times, and in the summer visited by swallows.
The path skirted the field the trees casting long shadows across it.
and then veered off where we crossed a lovely little wooden bridge into a sunlit field.
We found ourselves back on the road, then another bridge back over the river and up a winding road back into Chagford.
The town was busier than when we`d left it, people were out shopping and stopping for coffee in the little cafes.
This one was new I think and looked quite delightful, I loved the name of it.
All in all it was a lovely walk, peaceful, pretty and full of all the best parts of nature, just what I needed.