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|Sampford Courtenay to Okehampton|
|Author: Claire, Published: 01 Jul 2012||Walk rating : Rating:|
|An 8 mile linear walk from Sampford Courtenay to Okehampton with a train journey on the Dartmoor Railway in the opposite direction. It is easiest to begin with the seven minute train journey from Okehampton Station to Sampford Courtenay (limited timetables apply so check before you plan your walk at www.dartmoor-railway.co.uk). The return walking route gives a lovely mix of scenery. The first 3 miles follow a quiet lane through Devon countryside to reach the beautiful village of Belstone. The route then continues heading high into Dartmoor passing by Belstone Tor and crossing the East Okement River before returning through farmland to reach Okehampton. |
The walk follows a mixture of quiet tarmac lanes (there are no pavements so take care of traffic), rocky tracks through Dartmoor (wear sturdy boots to protect your ankles!) and grass paths through hills and valleys (which will be muddy after wet weather). The paths across Dartmoor are quite exposed so make sure you are well prepared for the walk with clothing, drinks and food. There are no stiles, just a few gates and you will be sharing many of the paths with sheep so take care with dogs. There are many climbs and descents throughout. Toilets and refreshments are available at Okehampton Station. Approximate time 4 hours (excluding the train journey).
If you are travelling by car, the easiest place to park is the free car park at Okehampton Station on Station Road, Okehampton, EX20 1EJ. From here take the train for just one stop from Okehampton to Sampford Courtenay. Trains (steam and diesel) are limited to weekends and Bank Holidays plus some weekdays in the summer so check the timetable before you travel at www.dartmoor-railway.co.uk.
|Sampford Courtenay to Crossways|
Start point: 50.7702 lat, -3.9483 long
Begin by travelling by train on the Dartmoor Railway from Okehampton Station to Sampford Courtenay Station - very limited timetables apply so check before you plan your walk.
|Crossways to Belstone View Point|
Start point: 50.7407 lat, -3.9523 long
Continue on the main lane here, bending to the left and signed to Belstone. Follow the lane as it crosses the A30 and then a few yards later go straight ahead at the crossroads, again signed for Belstone. On the left you'll see the plaque on a marker stone, signalling the entrance to Dartmoor National Park.
|Belstone View Point to Stone Track Junction|
Start point: 50.7247 lat, -3.9568 long
Retrace your steps back to the telegraph office, and then turn left and left again up the narrow lane with a 'no through road' sign. Follow this lane heading steeply uphill until you reach the wide metal gate marking the entrance to Dartmoor. Pass through the gate and, as you do so, turn back to look at the gate post. You'll see an otter paw print here, which marks the fact that you are now following part of the Tarka Trail.
|Stone Track Junction to Lower Halstock Farm|
Start point: 50.7122 lat, -3.9743 long
Swing right here and follow the track as it crosses several stone bridges to cross the river at the base of the valley. Immediately after crossing the bridges keep right on the grass and stone track heading uphill with the river now to your right.
|Lower Halstock Farm to Bridle Path|
Start point: 50.7255 lat, -3.9822 long
Keep left here, signed as the bridleway, and following the track passing through the centre of the stone farm buildings of Lower Halstock Farm. Follow the narrow tarmac lane as it dips to cross a bridge over Moor Brook and then climbs to continue with the sheep and horse pastures each side.
|Bridle Path to Okehampton Station|
Start point: 50.7284 lat, -3.9937 long
Follow the bridle path heading steeply downhill with the line of beech trees to the left. You will pass a couple of stiles on the left. Continue ahead until you reach a wide wooden gate on the left, with a path coming in from the right. Turn left here, through the gate, signed as a public bridleway for Dartmoor National Park.
Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2012 by the author clairesharpuk and may not be reproduced without permission.
The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.
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Even on a cold windy day with it trying to snow this was still an excellent walk. We managed it with our 2 children of 5 yrs and one in a all terain pram (a defo no no with a normal pram). Will be doing this one again in the summer.
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